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Jakarta Post

Indonesia's 'socio-nationalism' in global vaccine diplomacy

  • Darmansjah Djumala


Vienna   /   Thu, April 8 2021   /  01:00 am
Vaccine deal: State-Owned Enterprises Minister Erick Thohir (left) and Foreign Minister Retno Marsudi (second left) witness the signing of a letter of intent between representatives of the Indonesian Health Ministry and AstraZeneca in London on Oct. 14, 2020. Indonesia ordered 100 million doses of COVID-19 vaccine from the British pharma giant. (Courtesy of/Indonesian Foreign Ministry)

It has been a year since the COVID-19 pandemic struck the world. The global economy slowed down, the trade and movement of goods, services and people were choked, and global supply chains disrupted. In the early days of the pandemic, many worried about the scarcity of medical equipment due to the export ban. Nevertheless, people always find ways to solve problems. When the world fell short of face masks due to surging demand, textile factories shifted their business to produce masks en masse. The same situation occurred with other medical equipment like personal protective equipment, respirators and ventilators. This state of scarcity became a political issue between Europe and China. When European Union states forbade exports of medical devices among themselves, China sent aid to several European countries that were facing shortages. There were concerns that China's mane...