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Nouvarah Ahdiba

24
April

 

Indonesian Foreign Affairs Minister Retno Marsudi, at a ministerial-level videoconference meeting between ASEAN and the US, Thursday, emphasized that the strategic partnership between both sides should be utilized to optimally handle the COVID-19 pandemic.

"We emphasize that although each country faces severe challenges at home, if we unite and help one another, the burden will be lighter," she affirmed while delivering a press statement virtually, following the meeting.


At the meeting, with attendees comprising ASEAN Secretary General Lim Jock Hoi, US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, and all foreign ministers of ASEAN member countries, Indonesia suggested to forge innovative cooperation, particularly to cater to the demand for medical equipment and medications.


"For the short term, Indonesia reiterates the importance of cooperation in developing vaccines, and once vaccines are available, Indonesia consistently emphasizes vaccine accessibility for developing countries and least developed countries," she noted.


The minister said for the long term, Indonesia believes that future ASEAN-US cooperation should prioritize bolstering the resilience of the health system through the development of a region-wide disease control structure, among others.


Indonesia also proposed the reallocation of funds from the US Agency for International Development (USAID) under the Inclusive Growth in ASEAN through the Innovation program, Trade and E-commerce (IGNITE) and the Partnership for Regional Optimization within the Political-Security and Socio-Cultural Communities (PROSPECT).


"Indonesia also emphasizes the importance of strong, shared, and coordinated global leadership in coping with the pandemic and its good impact on the social economy," Marsudi remarked.


The US, as one of ASEAN's strategic partners, has provided a total of US$35.3 million for handling the COVID-19 outbreak in the region.


Specifically for Indonesia, the aid allocation of over $3 million is channeled through the World Health Organization (WHO) and several research institutions in the form of laboratories, supervision, and the supply of medical devices, including personal protective equipment and reagents.
(ANTARA)

24
April

 

 

The Asian Development Bank (ADB) has approved a US$1.5-billion budget support for Indonesia to help the nation deal with the impact of the coronavirus pandemic on public health, livelihoods, and the economy.

The ADB's budget support is expected to help the Indonesian Government respond to challenges posed by the COVID-19 outbreak, ADB president Masatsugu Asakawa said in a press statement on the bank's official website that ANTARA accessed from Jakarta on Thursday.

Asakawa said the budget support would be utilized by the government with a strong focus on “the poor and the vulnerable”, including women.
"The quick-disbursing financing is part of a larger support package that ADB will provide to help Indonesia respond to COVID-19, in close coordination with other development partners," he revealed.

The coronavirus pandemic has had a debilitating health, social, and economic impact on Indonesia, he noted.

"I commend the government on its response to the pandemic, including strong and well-coordinated economic and fiscal measures," he added.
In connection with the ADB’s budget support, Indonesia's Finance Minister Sri Mulyani Indrawati was quoted as saying that ADB’s assistance was "timely" and would "help the government implement comprehensive measures to mitigate the devastating impact of COVID-19."
"We appreciate the speed of ADB's response and close engagement with the government to support the urgent needs of Indonesia," Indrawati was quoted as saying in the ADB press statement.

ADB president Asakawa visited Indonesia from 2–4 March and met with President Joko Widodo, Finance Minister Sri Mulyani Indrawati, and other senior officials.
On 27 March, he and Sri Mulyani discussed Indonesia's COVID-19 response and how ADB would back the country's endeavors to tackle the spread of the virus.
The coronavirus disease initially struck the city of Wuhan in China at the end of 2019.

Since then, it has spread to at least 202 countries and territories, including Indonesia, with a massive spurt in death toll.

As of April 23, Indonesia has recorded 7,775 confirmed COVID-19 cases. While the death toll from the virus has touched 647, as many as 960 patients have recovered from the infection so far. (ANTARA)




20
April

 

The government exempted import duties and import taxes on goods for COVID-19 response to all parties, including the central government, regional governments, individuals, legal entities, and non-legal entities. "With customs and tax facilities, this is very helpful in providing goods for domestic needs," Director General of Customs and Excise Heru Pambudi said in a press statement here on Sunday. This facility was stipulated in Minister of Finance Regulation number 34 / PMK.04 / 2020 concerning Provision of Customs and Excise and Taxation Facilities on Imports of Goods Needed for COVID-19 Response. The new regulation was born in accordance with Article 9 and Article 10 of a government regulation in lieu of law (Perppu) 1 of 2020 which gave the minister of finance the authority to provide customs facilities for the import of goods needed in handling the pandemic of the SARS-CoV-2 virus. The regulation, which was issued April 17, 2020, is an extension of the previous regulation for the provision of fiscal facilities based on Minister of Finance Regulation (PMK) 70 in 2012 and PMK 171 in 2019. However, he continued, the two schemes were still unable to solve problems in the field. With this latest regulation, imports of goods for handling COVID-19 such as imports of goods by the private sector that are used alone or imports of goods through individuals (shipment) and passenger luggage, are now facilitated. The facilities provided are exemption from import duty and / or excise, are not subject to Value Added Tax (VAT) and Sales Tax on Luxury Goods (PPnBM). In addition, the exemption from collecting income tax (PPh) article 22 on the import of goods for the purpose of handling COVID-19 both for commercial and non-commercial purposes. Heru added that in this latest PMK there were 73 types of goods that were provided facilities in the customs and taxation facilities. As for imported goods that are provided with facilities, namely shipments originating from abroad, goods through bonded logistics centers (PLB), or goods released from bonded zones / bonded warehouses. Then, the free zone or special economic zone, and companies receiving export-import facilities (KITE). To get this convenience, submissions are made electronically through the Indonesia National Single Window (INSW) portal or submitted in writing to the Head of the Customs Office where the goods are imported. The submission is excluded for importing shipments and luggage of passengers whose value does not exceed the cost of the goods only on board or does not include ship costs (free on board / FOB) 500 US dollars, so there is no need to submit an application. The application, he said, was enough to be completed with the shipping document or consignment note (CN) for the shipment or Customs Declaration for passengers' luggage from abroad. Even so, for shipment items, the facility is provided after the Postal Operator or recipient of the goods submits the Taxpayer Identification Number (NPWP) in the consignment note. Whereas if the value of the shipment or passenger luggage value exceeds 500 US dollars Free on Board (FOB), the exemption facility can still be provided as long as the application has been submitted and approved by the Minister of Finance through the Head of the Customs Office. The import documents used for shipments or passenger luggage that exceed 500 US dollars Free on Board (FOB), he said, use the Notification of Imported Special Goods (PIBK). If the type of imported goods provided by the facility is subject to the provisions of the import trade system, Heru continued, for convenience it is sufficient to attach a letter of recommendation for import trade exemptions from the National Disaster Mitigation Agency (BNPB) at the time of import or release of goods. However, if the imported goods do not exceed the amount stipulated by the trade system or the relevant ministry or agency and / or BNPB, there is no need to attach a recommendation letter on the exclusion of the import trade system from BNPB. Heru explained that the term of the facility is valid until the end of the COVID-19 pandemic handling period that is set by the BNPB.(ANTARA)

18
April

 

 

The Indonesian Government has launched a new slogan — ‘My face mask protects you, and yours protects me’ — as part of a nationwide campaign to encourage the use of protective face masks to curb coronavirus infections.

The slogan was unveiled by government spokesperson for the handling of COVID-19, Achmad Yurianto, during his regular press conference on COVID-19 efforts here on Friday.
Wearing face masks is one the preventive measures that can help contain the spread of COVID-19, Yurianto said adding, people must wear masks to protect themselves from being infected and to prevent transmitting the disease to others.

The World Health Organization (WHO) and many medical doctors in different parts of the world have also recommended the use of face masks in wake of the global pandemic.
During the press meet, Yurianto also provided the latest information on the number of confirmed COVID-19 cases, number of patients who have fully recovered from the disease, and the death toll.

As of 12 a.m. Western Indonesia Time (WIB) Friday, Indonesia has recorded 5,923 confirmed cases, 520 deaths, and 607 recoveries, he informed.
With 407 new cases reported since the previous day, it is evident that coronavirus transmissions have continued, he added.

Yurianto urged people at large to uphold the spirit of "gotong royong" (mutual cooperation) to enable Indonesia to flatten the curve.

He also urged people to have empathy and show sympathy towards others by respecting those in self-quarantine; refraining from rejecting the bodies of deceased COVID-19 patients; and treating those diagnosed with COVID-19 symptoms humanely.

Yurianto also reminded all community members to follow a healthy lifestyle.
President Joko Widodo (Jokowi) has declared the coronavirus outbreak a national disaster in view of infections spreading to all 34 provinces in the country. COVID-19 initially struck the Chinese city of Wuhan at the end of 2019 and has since spread to several countries across the globe.

President Jokowi accorded national disaster status to the ongoing pandemic in a letter (number 12/2020) dated 13 April, 2020, which highlighted several points, including the appointment of head of the National Disaster Mitigation Agency (BNPB), Doni Monardo, to lead the COVID-19 task force.

The Task Force for the Accelerated Handling of COVID-19 will work on mitigating the impact of the pandemic through coordinated efforts with the concerned ministries, government agencies, and regional administrations, according to the letter.

The letter has also named governors, district heads, and city mayors as the heads of the COVID-19 task forces in their respective regions. While drawing up regional policies, they will be required to refer to the policies formulated by the central government.

Jakarta and several other cities in Indonesia have also imposed large-scale social restrictions and distancing measures to break the chain of the deadly outbreak. (ANTARA)