"We are optimistic that 2022 will be a better year for us, especially in dealing with COVID-19 and also in the context of economic progress," Director General of Information and Public Communication at the ministry Usman Kansong said at a webinar on 'Resilience and Optimism Towards 2022' on Friday.
People's adherence to the health protocols and response to vaccinations will determine how 2022 will turn out, Kansong added.
"We are still maintaining the health protocol and pursuing vaccinations," he said.
As reported, the coronavirus has mutated into several variants, with the latest Omicron variant emerging in several countries, he noted.
As an anticipatory step against the increase of positive cases, the government will implement Level 3 community activity restrictions (PPKM) during the Christmas and New Year holidays from December 24, 2021 to January 2, 2022, he said.
"We do not want a spike in cases after the holiday," Kansong added.
If the situation improves after the holiday, the policy on activity restrictions will be relaxed again, he said.
According to Kansong, PPKM is the right policy to apply given Indonesia's pandemic situation. PPKM has been able to reduce cases while keeping the wheels of the economy moving, he pointed out.
The ministry's enthusiasm and optimism over COVID-19 handling are also related to Indonesia's G20 Presidency, which kicked off on December 1, he said.
Indonesia wants to show itself as a strong community in facing challenges, including the pandemic. The country also wants to showcase its capacity for holding high-level conferences, forums, and other events amid the pandemic, he added.
Indonesia has become the first developing country to host the G20 forum. The G20 summit will take place in October 2022.
In addition to preparing the G20 event, the Communication and Informatics Ministry is also trying to communicate to the public regarding the transition from pandemic to endemic phase in 2022.
The community needs to be prepared to face the change that one day COVID-19 will become an endemic disease in certain areas, he remarked.
Related news: Pandemic is a chance for economic transformation: President Jokowi
Related news: Health Ministry to finalise booster vaccine policy for elderly
Related news: Indonesia receives Janssen vaccine from the Netherlands