JAKARTA, KOMPAS.com – The United States has donated hundreds of ventilators to Indonesia in the most high-profile display of bilateral cooperation between the two countries in their fight against Covid-19.
Indonesian Defense Minister Prabowo Subianto symbolically received a consignment of 500 ventilators from Heather Variava, charge d’affaires of the US embassy in Jakarta, at Halim Perdanakusuma Air Base on Sunday, August 30.
“The Indonesian government thanks the American people and government for providing [the ventilators], in what is a gesture of solidarity, friendship and empathy,” said Prabowo in a press release on Monday.
“The ventilators will be useful in countering [Covid-19] in Indonesia, especially in [far-flung provinces],” Variava said. “The shipment is the first of 1,000 newly manufactured, state-of-the-art ventilators which will be sent to Indonesia.”
“[The ventilators] also reflect President Donald Trump’s support for Indonesia’s efforts to combat Covid-19. We hope [the ventilators] will improve the Indonesian government’s ability to treat coronavirus cases.”
The US currently has more than 6 million Covid-19 cases. It also has the world's highest coronavirus death toll with more than 183,000 deaths.
The aid comes days after Australia also sent 100 ventilators to Indonesia. Indonesian Foreign Minister Retno Marsudi confirmed the shipment.
She added that Australia is also seeking to collaborate with the Eijkman Institute, Indonesia’s oldest medical institution, in researching and producing vaccines.