US to ship 4 million vaccine doses to Indonesia 'as soon as possible'
A healthcare worker in personal protective equipment takes a swab sample from a person to test for the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) during mass testing at a school in Jakarta, Indonesia, July 2, 2021. (Photo: Reuters)
The United States will ship 4 million doses of Moderna Inc's COVID-19 vaccine to Indonesia as it battles a coronavirus outbreak, the US national security adviser told the Indonesian foreign minister on Friday.
In a call with Retno Marsudi, Jake Sullivan said the doses would be shipped via the COVAX global vaccine sharing program "as soon as possible," a White House statement said.
Sullivan said the donation "underscored the United States’ support for the people of Indonesia as they fight a surge in COVID-19 cases."
The two officials also discussed US plans to increase assistance for Indonesia’s broader COVID-19 response efforts, the statement said.
"Sullivan highlighted the importance the Biden-Harris administration places on Indonesia, Southeast Asia and ending the pandemic more broadly and pledged continued support and high-level engagement," the statement said.
Indonesia is the world's fourth most populous country and has been battling one of the Asia's worst coronavirus outbreaks. The nation has recorded record new infections on eight of the past 12 days, including 25,830 cases on Friday, and a record 539 deaths.
Indonesia has relied mainly on the vaccine from China's Sinovac Biotech, but has been looking to diversify supply sources.
Penny K. Lukito, the chief of Indonesia's food and drug agency, said earlier on Friday it authorized the Moderna vaccine for emergency use.
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