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The Lancet Examines Global Health Diplomacy In Indonesia

The Lancet examines Indonesia’s increasing role in the global health arena, noting, “In a report [.pdf] published this month by the Center for Strategic and International Studies based in Washington, D.C., senior fellow Murray Heibert argues that this year, Indonesia will hold an unprecedented position as a health leader.” The journal writes, “In a single year, the Indonesian president was appointed to co-chair a U.N. panel tasked with setting post-2015 Millennium Development Goals (MDGs); the Indonesian health minister took over as [Board] chair of the multibillion dollar Global Fund for AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria, becoming the first person from Asia to serve; and the nation will play host to two high-level health conferences in 2013 — an APEC health financing meeting and the 4th Islamic Conference of Health Ministers of the Organization of Islamic Conference.”

“The appointments mark a swift evolution of Indonesia’s role on the global health scene, the report argues,” according to The Lancet. “The year 2013 provides Indonesia [with] an opportunity to put itself at the center of the global health diplomacy map,” Heibert writes, adding, “To play at this level on a global multilateral platform will require that Indonesia invest heavily in the expertise and diplomatic skills necessary to drive a complex agenda at the global level,” according to the journal. The Lancet adds, “WHO Representative to Indonesia, Khanchit Limpakarnjanarat, says that there was little surprise that Indonesia had grown more focused on health diplomacy as it became an increasingly influential nation” (Seiff, 7/27).