President Joko Widodo (Jokowi) has opened up the possibility for the government to revoke the policy of imposing restrictions on community activities (PPKM) in Indonesia.
PPKM is the government’s means to deal with the COVID-19 pandemic in Indonesia. It was previously extended from 6th December 2022 to 9 January 2023.
“Yesterday, our daily cases were at 1,200. Maybe at the end of the year, we will declare an end to our PPKM,” said Jokowi at the 2023 Indonesia Economic Outlook event on Wednesday 21st December.
The consideration to stop PPKM is based on the number of COVID-19 cases in Indonesia showing a significant downward trend compared to the peak of the Delta and Omicron COVID-19 waves in Indonesia.
According to him, the Delta wave peaked at 56,757 cases on 15th July 2021 and the Omicron wave topped 64,718 cases on 16th February 2022, both brought many lessons to Indonesia. At that time, there was a shortage of personal protection equipment and oxygen cylinders, and many patients were piled up in various regions.
Jokowi also said that he had received pressure to impose a lockdown in Indonesia during the Delta wave last year. However, he considered that if the lockdown was implemented, the economy in Indonesia would not survive to the point it is now.
“Maybe the story will be different now,” he expressed.
Previously, the COVID-19 Handling Task Force also considered that the coronavirus is no longer something to be afraid of if there was no spike in cases during Christmas and New Year 2023.
“Indonesia would be great if it could prove that, right now, we really can carry on as normal, but the cases haven’t increased,” Spokesman for the COVID-19 Handling Task Force Wiku Adisasmito said on Tuesday 20th December.