December 25, 2020, 01.10 AM

JAKARTA, KOMPAS.com – Indonesia’s bid to provide free Covid-19 vaccines for all Indonesians in 2021 is becoming more tangible, as the government released its estimates to buy and distribute the vaccines.

“The government has allocated Rp. 63-73 trillion [$4,437,001,800-5,140,827,900] for the procurement and distribution of Covid-19 vaccines next year,” said Coordinating Minister for Economic Affairs Airlangga Hartarto on Thursday, December 24.

“The number is outside the Rp. 169.7 trillion [$11,939,582,900] that the government allocated for the 2021 health budget.”

Also read: President Jokowi Okays Free Covid-19 Vaccinations for All Indonesians

Airlangga added that the budget will go towards procuring vaccines from various pharmaceutical companies worldwide, such as Sinovac, AstraZeneca, and CanSino.

He noted that the government is also working on the logistics of the vaccines, while waiting for the Food and Drug Agency (BPOM) to issue the Emergency Use Authorization to distribute the vaccines.

“BPOM’s [Emergency Use Authorization] is expecting the research results [for the vaccines] from Brazil. We will also complete the data on the first and second chemical data from Sinovac, before we get 1.8 million vaccines from them in January 2021.”

However, Finance Minister Sri Mulyani Indrawati said that the government currently allocated Rp. 18 trillion ($1,268,568,000) for vaccine reserves for 2020. She noted that while this number is set to rise, it is still lower than Airlangga's estimate.

Also read: Indonesia Receives 1.2 Million Doses of Covid-19 Vaccine from China's Sinovac

“The government has set aside Rp. 99.5 trillion [$7,011,615,750] for the National Economic Recovery program. We still have Rp. 36.4 trillion of spare funds in this deal,” she noted.

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