As compared to several countries, we are among countries with better conditions
Jakarta (ANTARA) - Coordinating Minister of Maritime and Investment Affairs Luhut Binsar Pandjaitan estimates that Indonesia's COVID-19 pandemic status might end by 2023.

"There is a huge possibility (on the end of the pandemic status), but we also have no idea whether there would be new (COVID-19) virus variants," the coordinating minister stated here, Wednesday.

Pandjaitan, concurrently serving as deputy head of the COVID-19 Handling and National Economic Recovery Committee (KPC-PEN), affirmed that Indonesia will refer to the World Health Organisation (WHO) regulations before declaring the end of the pandemic.

"We must comply with WHO (regulations), but our conditions are far improving now. As compared to several countries, we are among countries with better conditions," he noted.

He said that Indonesia fared better than other countries, especially nations entering the winter season, where the COVID-19 infection rate surged again.

"COVID-19 handling in Indonesia is good. As we can see, you are all masked and have received booster vaccines. I had even received my fifth vaccine dose," Pandjaitan remarked.

Earlier, Coordinating Minister of Economic Affairs and KPC-PEN Head Airlangga Hartarto said the government could declare the pandemic status as having ended if COVID-19 infection cases continue to decline until February 2023.

The government will also evaluate the public activities restrictions enforcement (PPKM) until the end of October 2022 to consider follow-up actions.

"We will determine the future of PPKM implementation at the end of next month (November 2022), provided that COVID-19 vaccination and booster vaccine administration intensified for November, December, and January," Hartarto expounded.

He remarked that if Indonesia can keep its COVID-19 infection cases low until February, the government can declare the pandemic over.

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Translator: Ade Irma Junida, Nabil Ihsan
Editor: Sri Haryati
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