Highlights in the media today: Number of cases surges after relaxation of social restrictions, COVID-19 spreads to almost all areas of Jakarta, Govt forms new joint COVID-19 response team.

Indonesia should prepare to face a surge in the number of COVID-19 cases, as the number of health protocol violations continues to increase following the relaxation of social restrictions.

Central Java confirmed 354 new cases yesterday, the second highest number in the country after Jakarta (361 cases). Central Java Governor Ganjar Pranowo said that the region is planning to test more people and evaluate the capacity of the laboratories in the region.

Meanwhile, Surabaya reported a reemergence of cases from wet market clusters—the first time in two months. The Surabaya administration confirmed 37 new cases in North Keputran Market yesterday. The market will stop all activities for a week.

As of July 21 16:16 (GMT+7), Indonesia had confirmed 89,869 COVID-19 cases with 48,466 recoveries and 4,320 deaths.

In Jakarta, almost all administrative villages have now recorded COVID-19 cases. High concentration of cases was found in North and Central Jakarta. The doubling rate was relatively high as well. From June 4 to July 18, Penjaringan, Sunter Jaya, and Kramat administrative villages recorded 17, 18, and 11 cases, respectively.

The Jakarta administration has classified 30 community units (RW) as areas requiring strict control; most of them are located in Central Jakarta. The spread of the virus in the region was believed to have been caused by several factors, such as people’s high mobility, population density, bad sanitation, and people disregarding health protocols.

The government announced on Monday (July 20) that it had formed the National Economic Recovery and COVID-19 Response Team to tackle both the health and economic aspects of the pandemic.

The team will be led by Coordinating Economic Minister Airlangga Hartanto as chairperson and State-Owned Enterprises (SOEs) Minister Erick Thohir as executive chairperson. The team comprises several ministers, such as the finance minister and the home affairs minister.

Institute for Development of Economics and Finance (Indef) economist Enny Sri Hartati said that Indonesia needed better leadership rather than a new government team. The main problem hindering the country’s COVID-19 response was miscoordination between government ministries and regional administrations.


  • Kompas.com, July 20, 2020, Indonesia confirms 89,869 COVID-19 cases

  • Kompas, July 21, 2020, p.11, Anticipating surge in number of cases

  • Kompas, July 21, 2020, p.12, Factors behind COVID-19 spread in Jakarta

  • The Jakarta Post, July 21, 2020, p.1, Govt sets up new joint COVID-19 response team

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