Jakarta. The Finance Ministry has issued a ministerial regulation to exempt taxes on the novel coronavirus vaccine imports as part of the government's effort to support its mass vaccination program next year.
Under the regulation, importers would be exempted from paying import duties, value-added tax, and a deductible income tax (PPh 22) on the import of novel coronavirus vaccine or import of raw materials and equipment for making the vaccine, the ministry said in a statement on Monday.
Also, under the regulation, the customs would expedite the vaccine imports at the ports, including by forgoing physical inspections, Syarif Hidayat, the director of international and interagency customs at the Directorate General of Customs and Excise at the Finance Ministry, said in the statement.
Syarif said the central government, local governments, as well as state-owned enterprises, companies, organizations, or partnerships "that have been assigned or appointed by the Health Ministry" can apply for the tax exemption and the customs facility.
The customs facilities would also be available through Bonded Logistics Centers, Bonded Zones or Bonded Warehouses, Special Economic Zones, Free Zones, or companies with the ease of importation for export purpose (KITE) permit.
Syarif said the ministry expected the new regulation would provide legal certainty for various parties to meet Indonesia's vaccine needs to curb the spread of the Covid-19 pandemic.
"With the implementation of vaccination in the country, the spread of the coronavirus can be prevented," he said.
The government aimed to source 236 million doses of vaccine to immunize more than 107 million people between 18-59 years old by the end of next year.
State-controlled company Bio Farma will source the vaccines from China's Sinovac Biotech, China National Pharmaceutical Group (Sinopharm), and CanSino Biotech. The government is also working on a deal with US vaccine producers AstraZeneca and Novavax for more vaccines.
The government would foot the bill for 30 percent of the vaccines while expecting the remaining immunization targets to pay for the vaccine themselves.
Separately, publicly listed pharmaceutical firm Kalbe Farma is also working with South Korea's Genexine in the development of a coronavirus vaccine, preparing for a clinical trial in Indonesia. Genexine vaccine is currently in the second phase clinical trial.