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If Indonesia is to remain one of Asia's most robust economies, it is essential that its current leadership recommit to narrowing the socio-economic gap.During much of the 1970s and 1980s, Indonesia's low level of income inequality helped raise living standards and reduce poverty. Since the Asian financial crisis in 1997, income gaps have widened throughout the region, and in Indonesia in particular, where social welfare programs have barely stemmed the rise in inequality.Because persistent high or rising inequality can contribute to political instability and undermine social cohesion, it is critical that Indonesia address it.Indonesia is moving in the opposite direction. Still, reforming the education sector alone will not be enough to close Indonesia's wealth gap.If Indonesia is to hit the targets set by the United Nations' Sustainable Development Goals for reducing inequality by 2030, it must follow these countries' example.Bambang Brodjonegoro, Indonesia's minister of national development planning, has helped make social inequality a key agenda item, following the direction of President Joko Widodo.Clearly, the political will exists to restore greater equality to Indonesia's economy.
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