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Wednesday, 27 July 2016

Influenza Virus Monitoring online in Indonesia


The poultry industry makes up 1% of Indonesia’s gross domestic product and provides the protein needs of 232 million Indonesians. The complex poultry industry structure, starting from intensive poultry farms, semi-intensive broiler and layer farms, and small scale backyard poultry farms provide meat and eggs through traditional markets all over Indonesia. The introduction of the H5N1 Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza (HPAI) virus in 2003 has disrupted the productivity of the poultry industry. Vaccination is used as one of the 8 strategies to fight the influenza virus in poultry.

Since 2009, the Government of Indonesia, supported by the influenza expert network of OIE/FAO (OFFLU) and FAO – ECTAD Indonesia have tried to increase the capacity of eight (8) animal health diagnostic laboratories, PUSVETMA, BBLITVET and BBPMSOH to detect and monitor the presence of the avian influenza virus circulating in Indonesia. The laboratory network was then developed to identify potential virus variants; determining the candidate strains for challenge virus and monitoring the efficacy of AI vaccines used. The diagnostic methods are harmonized with standard biological reagents for high quality results.


The characterization of clade 2.1.3 H5N1 AI in the laboratory provided the following results:


A. Determine 4 vaccine strains:

1. A/Chicken/West Java/PWT-WIJ/2006;

2. A/Chicken/Pekalongan/BBVW-208/2007;

3. A/Chicken/Garut/BBVW-223/2007;

4. A/Chicken/West Java (Nagrak) 30/2007


and 2 challenge strains:

1. A/Chicken/West Java-Subang/29/2007 and

2. A/Chicken/West Java/Smi-Pat/2006 through the Director General of Livestock and Animal Health Service’s decision letter on the use of local vaccine that matches the virus epidemiologically.


B. Detect the new clade 2.3.2.1 H5N1 HPAI virus in mid-August 2012 that infects ducks and has spread to islands outside of Java. With the presence of two H5N1 HPAI clades, the HPAI situation in Indonesia becomes more complex and requires a rapid communication system. In relation to this matter, a web-based communication system has been developed to accelerate the reporting of HPAI H5N1 virus monitoring to decision makers at the National level. Communication methods between laboratories have been implemented within the Influenza Virus Monitoring (IVM) Online system, developed since 2011 and launched on 20th of May 2014.



Wednesday, 22 June 2016

Japan Should Refute Every Lopsided Claim that Russia Makes

By HAKAMADA Shigeki
Trustee, JFIR

Japan will host the G7 Ise-Shima summit on May 26 and 27. Prior to this, Prime Minister Shinzo Abe will visit several countries in Europe and Sochi of Russia during the "Golden Week" holidays in early May, in order to meet European leaders and President Vladimir Putin.

Meanwhile, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov expressed his hardline views in detail to deny everything associated with bilateral negotiations with Japan since the Soviet era, regarding the Russo-Japanese peace treaty. Nevertheless, Prime Minister Abe dares to visit Russia to have a bilateral summit, despite objection and concerns among Western allies, notably the United States.

The foremost reason for it that Abe proclaims publicly is to conclude the peace treaty with Russia. If he is dedicated to the summit with Putin so much, I would suggest that the Japanese government do the following, in order to gain an understanding from the global community.

That is, to promote Japanese viewpoints on this issue both at home and abroad, in order to show how Russian arguments are clearly wrong. Up to now, the Japanese government has been too considerate of the Russian side, though their criticism to Japan dismisses past negotiations for the peace treaty. If this goes on, the global community will not understand Japan's standpoint. Also, it would make Abe defensive at the summit, from the beginning.

These days, the Kremlin disseminates strongly anti-Japanese propagandas worldwide that deny all the processes of past Russo-Japanese talks on the Kuril Islands dispute, though these arguments are poorly reasoned. Their point is that the territorial dispute after World War II has been settled, and "the Russo-Japanese talks for the peace treaty are irrelevant to the territorial issue".

On the Russian side, President Putin said "South Kuril (Northern Territories for Japan) belongs to Russia as a result of World War II, according to the international law" in September 2005, and even told more harshly, "The transfer of Habomai and Shikotan islands based on the Soviet-Japanese Joint Declaration is not territorial retrocession" in March 2012 and May 2014.

Last year, Deputy Foreign Minister Igor Morgulov dismissed the fact completely as to mention, "We have not done any negotiation with Japan regarding the territorial dispute." Furthermore, Foreign Minister Lavrov invited 200 Russian and more than 250 foreign journalists to the press conference on January 26 this year, to denounce Japan for unfounded reasons, by referring to the UN Charter and the Soviet-Japanese Joint Declaration in detail.

What Russian leaders argue consistently today, is that Japan does not recognize the reality settled as a result of World War II, in other words, Japan is too revisionist.

Lavrov's press conference was held when Ukraine and Syria drew much attention from the global community, and he told about the Russo-Japanese peace treaty in detail on this occasion, on behalf of the Russian government. That suggests implicitly that there is a strong intension on the Russian side to promote their logic on the peace treaty with Japan throughout the world.

What I am most critically concerned is that the Japanese side does not reveal information to the Japanese public and the global community, to show how Russian logics are outrageous, while Russia launches international campaigns aggressively.

Regretfully, the Japanese government just said "Russian claims are unconstructive and not in accordance with facts and our bilateral summits agreements" to argue against Morgulov. But I am quite skeptical whether such a statement persuades anyone into understanding why Russian arguments defy facts and bilateral agreements, and why they are wrong.

Also, I am concerned with Japanese counterargument to the appalling view presented by Foreign Minister Lavrov, in the same way. The Japanese government just said "Their claims are unacceptable for us, because the centerpiece of the peace treaty is the sovereignty issue of the Northern Territories, that is, the territorial dispute," without explaining why Russian side claims were wrong.

Moreover, the Japanese side said, "We do not consider specific actions against them, including protest." Of course, sensitive diplomatic negotiation processes like territorial talks should be kept secret. However, the Japanese government should promote their fundamental viewpoints to the global community more proactively, in order to refute Russian distortion of the fact.


Source : The Japan Forum on International Relations (JFIR) E-Letter 20 June 2016, Vol. 9, No.3

Friday, 27 May 2016

Peringatan Hari Kebangkitan Nasional ke 108 tahun 2016

          Tema peringatan Hari Kebangkitan Nasional tahun 2016 adalah “Mengukir Makna Kebangkitan Nasional dengan Mewujudkan Indonesia yang Bekerja Nyata, Mandiri dan Berkarakter“. Dengan tema ini kita ingin menunjukkan bahwa tantangan apapun yang kita hadapi saat ini harus kita jawab dengan memfokuskan diri pada kerja nyata secara mandiri dan berkarakter.

      Pada hari Jumat tanggal 20 Mei 2016 telah dilaksanakan upacara yang dilakukan oleh seluruh Kementerian di Indonesia.  Sambutan dari menteri Komonikasi dan Informasi yang dibacakan oleh pembina upacara berisi  :

1.  Semoga segenap warga bangsa di manapun berada, yang sedang mengikuti upacara Hari Kebangkitan Nasional ke 108, senantiasa dalam lindungan Tuhan Yang Maha Esa.

2.  Berdirinya Boedi Oetomo sebagai sebuah organisasi modern pada tahun 1908 memunculkan sumber daya manusia Indonesia yang terdidik , memiliki jiwa nasionalisme kebangsaan, dan memiliki cita-cita mulia untuk melepaskan diri dari penjajahan.

3.   Perjuangan Boedi Oetomo yang dipimpin oleh Dokter Wahidin Soedirohoesodo dan Dokter Soetomo, dilanjutkan oleh kaum muda yang kemudian melahirkan Soempah Pemoeda pada tahun 1928. Dan melalui perjuangan yang tak kenal lelah akhirnya bangsa Indonesia dapat memproklamirkan kemerdekaan pada tanggal 17 Agustus 1945.

4.   NKRI adalah negara demokrasi berlandaskan ideologi Pancasila, yang menjunjung tinggi nilai-nilai agama dan adat istiadat yang hidup di tengah masyarakat.

5.  Wilayah NKRI terbentang luas dari Sabang hingga Merauke, terdiri dari 17.508 pulau, dihuni oleh penduduk sebesar 254,9 juta jiwa dengan 1.331 suku bangsa, 746 bahasa daerah, dengan garis pantai sepanjang 99.093 km persegi.

6.   Menjadi kewajiban seluruh komponen bangsa Indonesia secara konsisten untuk menjaga, melindungi dan memelihara tegaknya NKRI dari gangguan apapun, baik dari dalam maupun dari luar dengan cara menerapkan prinsip dan nilai-nilai nasionalime dalam kehidupan sehari-hari.

7.  Medium baru teknologi digital berperan penting dalam penyebaran informasi baik positif maupun negatif, secara cepat dan massif yang menimbulkan dampak seperti: (a) ancaman radikalisme dan terorisme untuk penyebaran paham dan praktiknya; (b) munculnya kekerasan dan pornografi yang terjadi pada generasi belia yang menjadi masalah kultural utama; (c) dalam lanskap dunia kita menghadapi problem kaburnya batas-batas fisik antara domestik dan internasional; (d) makin rentan terhadap penyusupan ancaman terhadap keutuhan NKRI dari luar wilayah negeri ini.

7.  Tantangan-tantangan baru yang muncul di depan kita tersebut memiliki dua dimensi terpenting, yaitu kecepatan dan cakupan.  Kita tidak ingin kedodoran dalam menjaga NKRI akibat terlambat mengantisipasi kecepatan dan meluasnya anasir-anasir ancaman karena tak tahu bagaimana mengambil bersikap dalam konteks dunia yang sedang berubah ini.

9.   Pada tema peringatan tahun ini, terdapat penekanan pada dimensi internasional, kita dihadapkan dalam kompetisi global.

a. Kita bahu-membahu bersama sesama anak bangsa untuk memenangkan persaingan-persaingan pada aras global, karena lawan tanding kita semakin hari semakin muncul dari seantero penjuru dunia.  Kita harus bangkit untuk menjadi bangsa yang kompetitif dalam persaingan pada tingkat global.
b.  Kini bukan saatnya lagi mengedepankan hal-hal sekadar pengembangan wacana yang sifatnya seremonial dan tidak produktif. Kini saatnya bekerja nyata dan mandiri dengan cara-cara baru penuh inisiatif, bukan hanya mempertahankan dan membenarkan cara-cara lama sebagaimana yang telah dipraktikkan selama ini.
c.  Kepada yang diberi amanat Allah untuk mengemudikan jalannya bahtera pemerintahan, diajak untuk : (a) menyelenggarakan proses-proses secara lebih efisien; (b) memangkas segala proses pelayanan yang berbelit-belit dan berkepanjangan tanpa alasan yang jelas; (c) membangun proses-proses yang lebih transparan; (d) memberikan layanan tepat waktu sesuai jangka waktu yang telah dijanjikan.

10. Proklamator dan presiden pertama RI, Ir Soekarno, pernah menekankan tentang pentingnya membangun karakter bangsa. 
     
   “membangun suatu negara, membangun ekonomi, membangun teknik, membangun pertahanan, adalah pertama-tama dan pada tahap utamanya, membangun jiwa bangsa. Tentu saja keahlian adalah perlu, tetapi keahlian saja tanpa dilandaskan pada jiwa yang besar, tidak akan dapat mungkin mencapai tujuannya". 
          
     "Amal semua buat kepentingan semua. Keringat semua buat kebahagiaan semua. Holopis kuntul baris buat kepentingan semua".

11. Semoga peringatan Hari Kebangkitan Nasional ini juga memperbarui semangat Trisakti “berdaulat dalam politik, berdikari dalam ekonomi, dan berkepribadian dalam kebudayaan”. Jalan kemandirian ini lnsya Allah akan membawa bangsa Indonesia mengalami kebangkitan yang selanjutnya, yaitu menjadi bangsa yang lebih jaya dan kompetitif dalam kancah internasional.


      Selamat Hari Kebangkitan Nasional ke-108. Indonesia tetap jaya!

Thursday, 21 April 2016

Has Abenomics Lost Its Initial Objective ?

 By SHIMADA Haruo
 President, Chiba University of Commerce

    I appreciate Prime Minister Shinzo Abe's devotion to his duty as the leader of Japan. The Abe administration upholds Abenomics which is a vital policy for the Japanese economy and people's life, and it draws worldwide attention. However, I am deeply concerned with the accomplishments of Abenomics until now and its recent directions, since I still support the Abe administration despite these worries.

    The key objective of Abenomics is a departure from 20 year deflation. For this purpose, the Bank of Japan supplied a huge amount of base money to cause inflation, and carried out quantitative and qualitative monetary easing so that consumers and businesses have inflationary mindsets.

    This "first arrow" of Abenomics was successful to boost corporate profits and raising stock prices by devaluing the exchange rate, but falling oil price makes it unlikely to achieve a 2% inflation rate, despite BOJ Governor Haruhiko Kuroda's dedicated effort. The quantitative and qualitative monetary easing will not accomplish the core objective.

    Another reason for such a huge amount of base money supply is to expand export through currency depreciation and to stimulate economic growth, but that has neither boosted export nor contributed to economic growth. We cannot dismiss world economic downturn, notably in China, but actually, Japanese big companies that lead national export, have shifted their business bases overseas during the last era of strong yen.

    From this point of view, I suspect that the Japanese government overlooked such structural changes that deterred export growth, even if the yen was devalued. The "second arrow" is flexible fiscal expenditure to support the economy, and the result of which has revealed that it is virtually impossible to keep the promise to the global community to achieve the equilibrium of the primary balance in 2020.

    In view of the above changes, I would like to lay my hopes on the "third arrow" of economic growth strategy. The growth strategy has been announced three times up to now, in 2013, 2014, and 2015, respectively.

    The strategy in 2013 launched three action plans, but they were insufficient. The 2014 strategy was highly evaluated internationally, as it actively involved in the reform of basic nature of the Japanese economy, such as capital market reform, agricultural reform, and labor reform. But it takes ten to twenty years for a structural reform like this to work.

    Meanwhile, it is quite difficult to understand the growth strategy approved by the cabinet in June 2015. Frankly, this is empty and the quality of it has become even poorer. Abenomics was heavily dependent on monetary policy, and did not tackle long term issues so much, such as social security and regional development.

    However, people increasingly worry about dire prospects of long term problems like population decrease, aging, and so forth, while the administration responds to such trends with mere slogans like "regional revitalization" and "dynamic engagement of all citizens". But it is quite unlikely that these "policies" will really revitalize the region, or promote dynamic engagement by the people.

    It appears to me that these slogans are intended to boost election campaigns for the House of Councillors or possible double election with the House of Representatives in July, rather than to resolve real economic problems.

    This is typically seen in distribution of subsidies to the region, increases in governmental assistance to all categories of people, particularly benefits to lower income and elderly people with the total amount of 360 billion yen, and complete acceptance of Komeito's demand to introduce the reduced consumption tax rate system.

    Still, I would like to support the Abe administration continually, and this is why I advise them to articulate their policy directions to manage increasingly unforeseeable economy. From now on, I will tackle specific issues of this big problem one by one.

(This is the English translation of an article written by SHIMADA Haruo, President, Chiba University of Commerce, which originally appeared on the e-forum "Hyakka-Seiho" of JFIR on February 8, 2016, and was posted on "JFIR Commentary" on March 17, 2016.)

Resource :

The Japan Forum on International Relations (JFIR) E-Letter(20 April 2016, Vol. 9, No.2)