As the pandemic shows a sign to recede, the Indonesian Ministry of Tourism and Creative Economy has an optimistic look towards the recovery and the revival of tourism industries. Focusing on the country’s biggest workforce demographic, the ministry has recently socialized a new initiative focusing on reskilling and upskilling Gen-Z and Millennials across cities in Indonesia.
Indonesian Minister of Tourism and Creative Economy, Sandiaga Uno, said that the initiative focuses on four core components, namely Four Aces (4 AS). With the 4 AS, the Ministry aims to encourage Indonesian Gen Z and millennials to make their contributions, therefore they can increase their competence and eventually initiate new innovations to revive tourism and the creative economy.
“4 AS means Kerja KerAS (Work Hard) — strategically optimizing skills and competency to deliver success, Kerja CerdAS (Work Smart) — using technology, digitalization, virtualization, and science to transform businesses, Kerja TuntAS (Work Thoroughly) — finding creative ways to fend off boredom and apprehension, Kerja IkhlAS — always making sure to do your best and let all love do the rest,” said Sandiaga.
The initiative also includes a series of youth empowerment programs in tourism and creative industry sectors on the pipeline, including technical training, webinars, mentorships, and incubator programs. It is designed following the Ministry’s three main pillars: Innovation, Adaptation, and Collaboration.
“To upgrade the initiative, we constantly innovate with big data to map out opportunities and potentialities of our youth in the tourism and creative economy sector. Adaptability is also important, especially in the face of COVID-19. The goal is to make the younger generation more observant in identifying opportunities, while improving new skills to encourage them to create new jobs for the nation’s economic recovery,” added Sandiaga.
Millennials and Gen Z play a vital role in reviving the tourism sector
Before the pandemic set in, tourism remained an important part of the country’s economic growth, contributing almost five percent of its gross domestic product annually. The industry has been seeing unprecedented setbacks since then.
As the pandemic enters its second year, the tourism sector has been greatly affected and is largely being put at a standstill. This has resulted in a 6.67% decline in the workforce in tourism. The Ministry predicted that 60% of job opportunities post-COVID in Indonesia are still untapped. Gen-Z and Millennials are poised to harness new opportunities in the post-pandemic economy by leading the charge as entrepreneurs, artisans, as well as tourism and creative industry workers.
The 4 AS program has put Indonesia’s Gen Z and Millenials at front and center. As of 2021, Gen Z and Millennials make up nearly 54% of the country’s total population. “Tapping into this valuable resource is seen as one of the key factors in accelerating the post-COVID recovery of Indonesia’s tourism sector,” said Sandiaga.
Partnerships and collaborations between various stakeholders are also important in supporting the younger generation to be creative. “Creativity will lead to innovation among the youth so that it can increase new jobs creations for a better future,” concluded Sandiaga.