Jakarta (ANTARA) - Vice President Ma'ruf Amin expressed belief that the commemoration of the 25th National Technology Awakening Day (Hakteknas) 2020 offers the right momentum for Indonesian scientists to develop the COVID-19 vaccine.

"I am optimistic that this would be an answer to the nation's self-reliance in facing existing challenges, especially in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic," Amin stated while delivering a speech at the opening of an event to commemorate the 25th National Technology Awakening Day here on Monday.

The vice president affirmed that technology and innovation currently held greater significance and played a more critical role in the face of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Amin expressed hope that all people would develop a greater sense of awareness of the importance of innovation and the culture of science and technology in their day-to-day lives.

"New innovations are especially necessary in the fields of health, economy, and education amid the COVID-19 pandemic to better respond to the existing challenges," he remarked.

Researchers, innovators, and the industry must also be heedful of the quality of products they manufacture.

"This is important not only in terms of the users but also for researchers, innovators, and other innovator communities, so that it can serve as a reference in the production of quality products," he emphasized.

In the meantime, Minister of Research and Technology/Head of the Research and Innovation Agency (Menristek/Head of BRIN) Bambang Brodjonegoro affirmed that several studies and innovations were underway for tackling the COVID-19 pandemic.

Research and innovations being conducted to handle the COVID-19 crisis comprise the production of ventilators, rapid diagnostic tests, polymerase chain reaction (PCR) test kits, mobile lab Biosafety level 2 (BSL-2), and Red and White vaccines expected to be ready for launch in the near future.

"We, through the Eijkman Institute, continue to develop Red and White vaccines against all strains of the COVID-19 virus. Efforts have been undertaken to produce recombinant protein to manufacture vaccines," he remarked.

National Technology Awakening Day is commemorated on August 10 every year as stipulated in Presidential Decree Number 71 of 1995. The commemoration aims to mark the technological achievements of Indonesians, including the maiden flight of the Gatotkaca N-250 aircraft in 1955 in Bandung, West Java. Related news: MUI should prepare edict for COVID-19 vaccine: vice president
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Translator: Fransiska N, Fardah
Editor: Suharto
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