President Jokowi launches Pandemic Fund prior to G20 Summit
Nusa Dua, Bali, Indonesianpost.com – President Joko Widodo via online means here on Sunday officially launched the Pandemic Fund which was successfully formulated by the G20 finance and health ministers under the Indonesian presidency this year.
The Pandemic Fund is a global effort to improve the global health architecture, particularly through a strong and reliable financing mechanism, so that in the future the world could better prevent and cope with pandemics, he said.
“I express my gratitude for (countries’) contributions to the Pandemic Fund. And by saying in the name of God, I am launching the Pandemic Fund today,” he said at the launch two days prior to the G20 Summit on November 15 to 16, 2022.
Jokowi commended G20 member countries and non-G20 member countries as well as philanthropic institutions that have expressed their commitment to contribute to the Pandemic Fund.
So far, it has pooled approximately US$1.4 billion or around Rp21.7 trillion from 15 countries and three philanthropic institutions. The figure is likely to continue to increase, since Australia, France, and Saudi Arabia have also expressed their commitments to contribute to the fund.
However, President Jokowi stated that the commitment of funds raised at this time is not enough, given that the World Bank and the World Health Organization’s study showed that they would need approximately US$31.1 billion annually in order to better prevent the risk of pandemics in the future.
“I thank donors from G20 and non-G20 member countries, as well as from philanthropic institutions which have contributed. However, the funds raised are still insufficient. I expect even greater support for this Pandemic Fund,” he said.
He compelled everyone to support some initiatives, such as the establishment of a health emergency response coordination platform in the form of an international economic fund to support pathogen monitoring, the global development of digital networks, vaccine certification to facilitate international travel and the establishment of fair and just research and manufacturing centers.
The proposal to create Pandemic Fund had been initiated by the Italian G20 Presidency in 2021; however, it was only been successfully agreed upon and completed under the Indonesian presidency.
Under its leadership, the G20 member countries agreed on both Pandemic Fund and its governing board, which is currently chaired by the Indonesian Finance Minister for the 2013-2014 period Chatib Basri, and the Rwanda Health Minister Daniel M Ngamije.
The Pandemic Fund Governing Board is tasked with compiling various guidelines and references, as well as receiving requests for funds and selecting beneficiaries.
Countries, both G20 members and outside of the group, can apply for funding from the Pandemic Fund to facilitate themselves in their efforts to prevent and handle future pandemic threats.