Jakarta (ANTARA) - The Ministry of Finance has directed funding of Rp3.3 trillion to the National Disaster Mitigation Agency (BNPB) to handle the novel coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic, the Ministry's Director General for Budget, Askolani, confirmed.

The funding is part of the budget amounting to Rp75 trillion provided by the government through Government Regulation in Lieu of Law (Perppu) No. 1 of 2020.

"The Ministry of Finance has channeled some initial funding of some Rp3.3 trillion to the BNPB to be utilized in the near future for handling the COVID-19 pandemic," Askolani stated during an online press conference in Jakarta on Wednesday.

Askolani explained that the BNPB will utilize the funds to cater to requirements in the health service sector, including for establishment of hospital facilities and infrastructure, provision of medical equipment, human resources, as well as a precautionary measure to cater to subsequent needs.

"The BNPB has channeled that funding for such areas, and we are ready to accommodate another additional budget proposed by the BNPB and Ministry of Health to support the health service sector in handling the COVID-19 pandemic," he added.

In keeping with the system of check and balance, Askolani affirmed that the distribution of funds for handling COVID-19 by the BNPB will be supervised by the Development Finance Comptroller (BPKP) and Corruption Eradication Commission (KPK).

"The BNPB, along with the BPKP and KPK, are distributing the funds, especially for the quick procurement of highly required medical equipment," he added. Related news: COVID-19 fallout: Indonesia increases budget spending by $24.8 billion
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Reporter: Astrid Habibah, Yuni Arisandy
Editor: Suharto
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