July 27, 2021

Province receives hundreds of oxygen cylinders following supply crisis + Thousands of foreigners leave country amid surge in cases + Singapore-Indonesia travel corridor delayed + more

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Weather & Tides

Today’s Weather for Southern Bali

Today’s Tides

Local Covid Numbers

*Note: Yesterday’s 1,078 new cases included 9 returned overseas travelers and 225 domestic travelers, making up 21.5% of the total. The 7-day average is now 1,110, and there have been 423 fatalities so far this month.

Click here to see the national numbers infographic and a Regency-by-Regency breakdown of yesterday’s local numbers. And in case you missed it, check out Sunday’s update for a summary of last week’s overall totals, with perspective on how they stack up against previous weeks, detailed breakdowns of the virus’ spread on a Regency-by-Regency level, and the national task force’s risk assessment for each district/city across the country.

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The Big News

"Bali Gets Hundreds of Oxygen Concentrators Following Supply Crisis" from Coconuts Bali: There’s a collective sigh of relief in Bali after the province received hundreds of oxygen concentrators from the central government, following an oxygen crisis officials confirmed only a few days ago. On Monday Bali Deputy Governor Tjokorda Oka Artha Ardana Sukawati said oxygen supply is gradually improving for the island. “As of today, [oxygen supply] is better. And the most important thing is that we got help, in the form of 264 oxygen concentrators,” the official, popularly known as Cok Ace, said. The concentrators have been delivered to hospitals with the most urgent need for the machine, he added, pointing to Sanglah General Hospital and Bali Mandara Hospital. Last week, Bali Health Agency Chief Ketut Suarjaya sounded the alarm for the region’s oxygen supply. “We’ve had an oxygen shortage since July 14, and it’s getting critical by the day because of a surge in new cases,” Suarjaya said on Friday. "There’s an oxygen crisis in Bali.” Suarjaya’s statement came only a couple of days after he reassured that there wasn’t a shortage of oxygen supply, merely delays in deliveries, following reports that private hospitals in Bali have begun to turn away patients due to unreliable oxygen supply.

"Foreigners Leave Indonesia Amid Coronavirus Case Spike" from The Jakarta Post (Metered Paywall): Thousands of foreigners left Indonesia in the first three weeks of July amid the ongoing multi-tiered public activity restrictions (PPKM) aimed at curbing the spread of the more transmissible Delta variant of COVID-19. Soekarno-Hatta International Airport authority recorded some 10,612 foreign nationals leaving Indonesia through the airport between July 1 and July 23. Japanese and Chinese citizens made up the biggest share, with 2,380 and 2,053 individuals, respectively. This was followed by 1,432 South Korean citizens and 1,251 United States citizens, as well as 775 French, 654 British, 625 Russian, 533 German, 467 Dutch, and 442 Saudi Arabian citizens. Japanese Ambassador to Indonesia Kenji Kanasugi previously said some Japanese citizens living in Indonesia would temporarily return to Japan for COVID-19 vaccination because of an inability to get the shots in Indonesia.

"Singapore-Indonesia Travel Corridor Delayed: Sandiaga" from The Jakarta Post: The government has delayed plans to establish a travel corridor with Singapore after Indonesia extended its multi-tiered public mobility restrictions (PPKM) amid rising COVID-19 cases. Tourism and Creative Economy Minister Sandiaga Uno said that the government would resume preparations for the corridor once domestic COVID-19 caseloads had fallen. The ministry would focus on opening travel corridors to Bali, as well as Batam and Bintan in the Riau Islands province, which are among the top travel destinations for Singaporeans. “The travel corridor arrangement program has been delayed because we are implementing PPKM level 4, but when the situation gets more conducive, we will resume it quickly,” Sandi said. The program also hinges on the state of the pandemic in Singapore, which recently tightened mobility restrictions amid a surge of cases, including by prohibiting dine-in services and limiting gatherings to two people.

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Other Headlines

"Munch in 20 Minutes: New Dine-in Rules, Concessions to Small Businesses as PPKM Mobility Curbs Eased" from Coconuts Jakarta: Restaurants and small businesses who have been choked by the implementation of the Enforcement of Restrictions on Public Activities (PPKM) can breathe a sigh of relief as President Joko Widodo has eased some restrictions, even if doing so may exacerbate the country’s health crisis. Under the new Level 4 PPKM rules [in place until August 2], traditional markets can now open as usual, while markets selling non-essential goods can open to 50% capacity until 3pm. Small businesses, including street vendors, convenience stores, and barbershops, among others, can open until 9pm with health protocol rules mandated by their respective regional governments. Food and beverage businesses, from street food sellers to small kiosks and restaurants that have open-air concepts, are allowed to serve dine-in customers for 20 minutes each, with diners encouraged to minimize speaking with one another while eating. Takeaway and delivery services are still permitted for all restaurants and eateries. Level 3 PPKM, features even more concessions, such as allowing malls to open to 25% capacity until 5pm, allowing houses of worship to open to 25% capacity, while customers can dine in at restaurants and eateries for up to 30 minutes each.

Context: In this new round of restrictions, Bali has both level 4 and level 3 areas. Regencies classed as level 3 include Jembrana, Bangli, and Karangasem, while level 4 regencies/city include Badung, Gianyar, Klungkung, Tabanan, Buleleng, and Denpasar. Tribun Bali has published an explainer on the differences in restrictions between the two levels.

Vaccination Update

"Ministry of Health: Limited Stock Affects Even Distribution of Vaccines" from Antara Bali (Indonesian): Spokesperson for Covid-19 Vaccination at the Ministry of Health, Siti Nadia Tarmazi, said that limited stock and technical production in the country have hampered the distribution of vaccines to a number of regions. "The real problem is that all vaccines haven't arrived yet. we need 426 million doses of vaccine. We have received 130 so far." According to Nadia, of the 130 doses available in Indonesia, 68 million have been distributed to all regions. As many as 50% of the vaccines were distributed to seven provinces on the islands of Java and Bali, because the number of cases in the region is quite high. The rest are distributed to 27 provinces outside Java and Bali. Nadia estimates Indonesia will receive 35 to 40 million vaccine doses in August. "That includes the Pfizer vaccine and maybe Novavax. Pfizer will come at the end of August, around 2 or 3 million doses," she said.  

Health Protocols (Prokes) & Health Services

"Bali Has 4,000 Covid-19 Tracers" from Bisnis Bali (Indonesian): Bali has 4,000 tracers assigned in the respective villages to conduct contact tracing for confirmed cases of Covid-19. Task Force Secretary Covid-19 Bali I Made Rentin said the tracers include members of the military, members of the police force in each village including non-commissioned youth officers, and Health Office personnel. Meanwhile, the Bali Regional Disaster Management Agency (BPBD) has 994 volunteers who are also ready to be deployed to villages to carry out massive tracing. With this method, it is hoped that tracing can be carried out on 15 close contacts of one person confirmed positive for Covid-19. This is in accordance with WHO standards, namely 15 people tested for one positive person, and this is expected to be achieved in Bali," he said.


Economy & Infrastructure

"Hotel Occupancy in Bali Getting Increasingly Worrying" from Bali Express (Indonesian): Since the implementation of Emergency PPKM, hotel occupancy in Bali seems to be increasingly worrying. In Badung itself, the maximum hotel occupancy is only 5%, with an average occupancy of 1 to 2%. Domestic tourists who originally came to Bali from 7 to 9,000 per day before the PPKM, dropped drastically to 1,000 arrivals a day. This clearly affects the occupancy of hotel rooms in the Badung area. "Wow, we can't talk about occupancy anymore, occupancy has dropped. The current situation and conditions are very, very concerning. We in Badung have more than 103,000 rooms, if only 1,000 tourists come a day, try to imagine (how it is filled)," said Chairman of the Indonesian Hotel and Restaurant Association (PHRI) Badung, I Gusti Ngurah Rai Suryawijaya. With a difficult situation like this, he added, the hotel management could not help but lay off their employees again. At least tens of thousands of hotel employees have returned home.



"Disappointed Their Children Not Accepted to Public High Schools, Hundreds of Parents Descend on Bali DPRD" from iNews Bali (Indonesian): They came to complain about their child who was not accepted in a public high school. They admitted that they did not have enough money to send their children to private schools, due to difficult economic conditions due to the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic. Receiving complaints from hundreds of parents of these students, the Bali DPRD said it had submitted the complaints to the plenary session. The Bali DPRD will summon the Head of the Bali Education Office to resolve this issue. "We have submitted this complaint to the Governor of Bali, then the Head of Education will be called to resolve it," said Deputy Chairman of the Bali DPRD, Nyoman Sugawa Korry. Meanwhile, the Deputy Governor of Bali, Tjokorda Oka Artha Ardana, admitted that he had heard the complaint. He said there was a reduced budget constraint due to the impact of Covid-19. However, the government will re-register so that all students can be accommodated in state high schools. "There will be an increase in the budget so that there will be additions that are accepted again," he said.

"Indonesia Needs 2,500 Tons of Oxygen Per Day: Minister" from Antara: Health Minister Budi Gunadi Sadikin has said, "Our daily oxygen requirement stood at 400 tons before the Eid al-Fitr festivities, and now (it) has climbed to 2,500 tons. Meanwhile, our production capacity is 1,700 tons per day." Every 1,000 oxygen concentrators can produce nearly 20 tons of oxygen per day, he added. "The donation of 17,000 (oxygen concentrators) has begun to arrive (in Indonesia). We plan to buy 20,000 that we will distribute to all hospitals with isolation rooms." He expressed the hope that the arrival of oxygen concentrators would reduce the need for procuring oxygen cylinders in large quantities. The second strategy to meet the country's oxygen requirement is utilizing the extra production capacity of domestic oxygen manufacturers. "We must use liquid oxygen for hospital ICU rooms since their oxygen requirement every minute is high. To offset the lack of oxygen need, we will utilize the extra capacity of domestic oxygen producers and the extra production capacity of other companies producing oxygen, such as steel nickel and fertilizer producers," he added.

"Jerinx Summoned for Questioning by Jakarta Police in Fresh Legal Complaint" from Coconuts Bali: Musician Jerinx is embroiled in yet another legal case for allegedly threatening a man identified as AD, with authorities in Jakarta expecting him to fulfill a police summon yesterday morning. “There is a summon scheduled for J based on a report from someone about an alleged threat,” Jakarta Metro Police spokesman Yusri Yunus said. However, it doesn’t seem that Jerinx, who is based in Bali, will be able to meet that summon, explaining on Instagram that there are “technical difficulties with regards to my medical history that are part of the health requirement to fly.” He claims that Jakarta authorities have provided him with an alternative in that he should be able to undergo questioning in Bali instead of traveling all the way to the capital. “However, this option still awaits internal coordination from the police force, and I have not received further information until now,” Jerinx, whose real name is I Gede Aryastina and is also known as JRX, wrote on Instagram. A man named AD reported Jerinx to the Jakarta Metro Police on July 10, alleging that the punk rocker had threatened to “step on his head on the sidewalk,” after also accusing him of hacking into his Instagram account.  

Of Interest

How You Can Help

In response to the collapse of the tourism sector in Bali and the resulting economic crisis, dozens of individuals and organizations have sprung into action, raising funds and distributing badly needed food and everyday essentials to the innumerable families who have suddenly found themselves without any source of income. We've been making an effort to document and raise awareness of these efforts. We will add information on projects in this space as we are able to confirm them. If you'd like to see a list of the efforts that we've featured so far and contribute to them with either time or money, visit our complete list here. You can also see a list of projects that have registered themselves with Bali Solidarity. If you know of an effort and would like to have them listed, please send their information to TheBaliBeat@outlanders.global.

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