President Jokowi calls for equitable access to COVID-19 vaccines

President Jokowi calls for equitable access to COVID-19 vaccines

President Joko Widodo

Jakarta (ANTARA) - Indonesian President Joko Widodo (Jokowi) has called for equitable access to COVID-19 vaccines for every country.

He voiced his call in his speech at the 2020 G20 Summit which was held virtually, via a video conference from the Bogor Presidential Palace, West Java, on late Saturday.

The President said that the G20 economies need to focus on two things amid the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, the Press Bureau of the Presidential Secretariat said on a press statement here on Saturday evening.

"First, there is a need for funding for health recovery. The world will not be healthy unless all countries are healthy. Vaccines are one of the ammunition," President Jokowi noted in the first session of the G20 summit themed "Overcoming Pandemics and Restoring Economic Growth and Jobs".

Hence, Jokowi emphasized that access to the COVID-19 vaccines must be available to all countries without exception.

He also said that the political commitment of the G20 countries was needed to mobilize global funding for health recovery.

Second, there is a need for support for world economic recovery. In this regard, the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) has requested funding support of US$2.5 trillion, so that developing countries are able to get out of economic downturns by widening their fiscal space.

The world economic recovery requires the attention of the G20 countries, including by restructuring debts of low-income countries.

"This debt restructuring must be accompanied by improved debt management, including data transparency and fiscal sustainability," the President added.

He also said that extraordinary support for fiscal, monetary and financial sector policies is very important to continue to be provided for developing countries, or otherwise the world economic recovery would take a long time.

"Fiscal flexibility in developing countries is needed to finance the social safety net, boost domestic consumption, and drive small and medium economies," he said.

Last month, the UN Secretary General also called for the need for stronger solidarity with developing countries in the current difficult times owing to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.

Without the help of the G20 countries, developing and underdeveloped countries will not be able to easily recover from the economic downturn caused by the pandemic.

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