Indonesia Intends to Try the COVID-19 Vaccines in early November

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Indonesia plans to start administering coronavirus vaccines by depending on supplies from Chinese drugmakers at the beginning of November, as the fourth most populous nation in the world is fighting a health crisis that may lead to the first recession in more than two decades.

The Coordinating Ministry for Maritime and Investment Affairs announced that CanSino Biologics, the first Chinese company to test the Covid-19 vaccine on humans, will provide 100,000 doses in November.

By December, Sinovac Biotech, a China-based company, will supply three million doses. Since April, the company has been collaborating with Indonesia’s state-owned pharmaceutical company Bio Farma on a vaccine for Covid-19.Starting in November, another five million doses will come from a collaboration between the Chinese state-owned pharmaceutical company Sinopharm and the technology company G42 of the United Arab Emirates.

According to the ministry in a statement, the three vaccines that are undergoing third and final phase clinical trials have received emergency use authorisation from China. Since late September, Indonesia has started training health officials at community clinics to administer Covid-19 vaccines.

Dr Terawan said the vaccines would be available for sale later, but for low-income groups, they would remain free. The statement follows a trip by high-ranking officials from Indonesia last week to Kunming, China.

The delegation included Dr Terawan, Head of the Food and Drug Agency of the country, Dr Penny K. Lukito; Honesti Basyir, President of Bio Pharma; and Mr Luhut Pandjaitan, Coordinating Minister of Maritime and Investment Affairs. Mr Luhut, who was named to lead the Covid-19 war in Indonesia by President Joko Widodo in September, had a meeting with Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi.

The visit saw China and Indonesia announce agreements to collaborate on research, production and delivery of vaccines for Covid-19. Mr Luhut quoted Mr Wang on Saturday as describing Indonesia as having the highest vaccine production potential in Southeast Asia.

In November, Bio Farma, which manufactures polio and BCG vaccines mainly used against tuberculosis, will start developing the Covid-19 vaccine. Many pharmaceutical firms, by comparison, are focusing on next-generation platforms involving the use of the coronavirus DNA or RNA that triggers Covid-19.

Bio Farma expects to scale up production to its full capacity of 250 million doses a year if the ongoing trial is successful. Many pharmaceutical firms, by comparison, are focusing on next-generation platforms involving the use of the coronavirus DNA or RNA that triggers Covid-19.

Bio Farma expects to scale up production to its full capacity of 250 million doses a year if the ongoing trial is successful.

Related Article: https://www.theasianaffairs.com/indonesia/2020/09/04/indonesia-will-provide-free-covid-19-vaccine-for-93-million-people-citizens-under-18-years-old-carried-out-on-next-phase/

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