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AsiaGlobal Voices

Trending Opinions From Across the Region

AsiaGlobal Voices is a curated feed of summaries of opinion articles, columns and editorials published in local languages in media from across Asia.

The publication of AsiaGlobal Voices summaries does not indicate any endorsement by the Asia Global Institute or AsiaGlobal Online of the opinions expressed in them.

Media Malpractice: Reporting an Unnecessary Detail
Monday, May 11, 2020
Media Malpractice: Reporting an Unnecessary Detail

Ha Jae-geun, culture critic, in Dailian (May 9, 2020)

Summary by Soomi Hong (Photo credit: LegoCamera / Shutterstock.com)

Media Malpractice: Reporting an Unnecessary Detail

The media coverage of the 66th Covid-19 infection case in Yongjin (in the Seoul Capital Area) is causing a national outrage. The confirmed patient visited a number of bars and clubs before testing positive for the virus. His itinerary was disclosed in accordance with the epidemic control policy. What made the media coverage outrageous was the unnecessary reporting that one of the places he visited was a gay club.

Adding this irrelevant detail was grossly problematic for a number of reasons. First, it is morally flawed. Revealing or speculating on a person’s sexual orientation without consent is a gross violation of the victim’s privacy, especially given the conservative South Korean context.

Second, what the media implies may not even be accurate. Yet the mere implication suffices in framing the victim as being part of a sexual minority. Since the initial media coverage, there has been an influx of malicious bashing of sexual minority groups, which is wrong by itself but was not unforeseeable. Knowing this, the media should have been extra careful but instead utterly failed.

Third, such coverage impedes to control the outbreak. With the public now assuming that all those associated with the confirmed patient are also members of a sexual minority, those who were in close contact with him have good reason to hide and deny any association with the incident.

In short, reporting the connection to the gay club was not only immoral but also counterproductive for society. From a public-health perspective, there was no reason for the nature of the club to have been disclosed. Irresponsible reporting turned out to be just as detrimental to society as citizens not abiding by the social-distancing rules.


A Meaningless War of Words
Monday, May 11, 2020
A Meaningless War of Words

Chao Chun-shan, Emeritus Professor at the Graduate Institute of China Studies of Tamkang University, in United Daily News (April 14, 2020)

Summary by Alan Yang Gregory (Photo credit: D Woldu/ITU)

A Meaningless War of Words

During a press conference on April 8, Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, Director-General of the World Health Organization (WHO), accused Taiwan’s government of spearheading personal and racist attacks against him over the past three months. This accusation triggered a war of words between the WHO and Taipei.

There indeed is evidence of some Taiwan netizens criticizing Tedros for what they view is his "pro-China" stance, while using indecent and racist language. Attributing the actions of certain individuals online to the entire population of Taiwan or to the government is unreasonable. It is therefore extreme to assert that Taiwan is "racist". As an immigrant society, Taiwan is known for preserving the warm, harmonious and inclusive aspects of Chinese culture. Taiwan is also renowned for its welcoming people.

Dr Tedros may be unaware of Taiwan ’s historical relations with African nations. As early as the 1960s, Taiwan provided aid to Africa, sending to the continent a large number of medical, farming and engineering teams. Yet many African nations subsequently recognized mainland China, forcing Taiwan off the United Nations.

The Chinese government claims that Taiwan is exploiting the Covid-19 pandemic to accelerate independence. These assertions are nothing more than further moves to oppose Taiwan ’s participation in the WHO. Taiwan is currently battling against the epidemic while simultaneously facing a political war of words. The coronavirus jeopardizes individuals, while political viruses endanger national security.


Finding a Balance Between Virus Control and Protecting the Economy
Monday, May 11, 2020
Finding a Balance Between Virus Control and Protecting the Economy

Dominic Lau Hoe Chai, National President, Parti Gerakan Rakyat Malaysia, in Oriental Daily (May 8, 2020)

Summary by Alan Yang Gregory (Photo credit: S.O / Shutterstock.com)

Finding a Balance Between Virus Control and Protecting the Economy

Prime Minister Muhyiddin Yassin announced that most economic activities would resume on May 4. The government must closely monitor the situation and take relevant measures to prevent future outbreaks and support Malaysia’s economic recovery. The Gerakan party supports the government ’s decision, as it strikes a balance between the fight against the epidemic and the need to revive the economy.

The government cannot keep people at home and stop all economic activities indefinitely. This decision is undoubtedly important for businesses and citizens. SMEs account for 70 percent of domestic enterprises, contributing more than two thirds of employment opportunities and accounting for nearly 40 percent of GDP. Only by keeping the enterprises active can we avoid growth in unemployment.

The resumption of some economic activities and employment, however, does not mean that the control order has been lifted. On the contrary, this is only a slight loosening of measures. People can still not hold large-scale group activities. The public must strictly abide by the guidelines set by the government to avoid future outbreaks of the virus. This will hopefully strike a balance between virus control and protecting the economy.

Health experts have warned that the Covid-19 virus could continue to circulate for the next two years. The government and the people should not become complacent. Actions such as wearing masks, maintaining personal hygiene and keeping safe social distance are all necessary. Law enforcement agencies should also enforce the law strictly and penalize those who violate orders.

The Gerakan Party emphasizes its support of the government ’s recent decision as the longer strict controls are in place, the greater the impact on the national economy.


In Dealing Covid-19, Pay Attention to Mental Wellbeing
Monday, May 11, 2020
In Dealing Covid-19, Pay Attention to Mental Wellbeing

Lin Ming Hui, retired, in Lianhe Zaobao (May 9, 2020)

Summary by Alan Yang Gregory (Photo credit: cattan2011)

In Dealing Covid-19, Pay Attention to Mental Wellbeing

Singapore’s fight against the Covid-19 virus has been remarkable for three key reasons: First, Singapore responded quickly. In addition to the monitoring and management mechanisms already in place, authorities made continual judgments based on the situation. Second, the integrity of the medical system has been maintained and well coordinated. Third, government communication has been consistently transparent. From the prime minister to the ministers, all have ensured the population were informed about the situation.

Now, the battle against the virus is focused on community transmission among migrant workers. It is therefore increasingly necessary to have clearer and more targeted strategies, while also considering associated issues including mental wellbeing.  

After nearly two months of gradual strengthening of virus control measures, the number of people calling for psychological counselling and assistance has increased significantly. At the same time, there have been reports that some people have rebelled against the circuit-breaker measures. We should expect such incidents to increase in the community due to the extension of control measures.

The various challenges that each person experiences – unemployment or loneliness, for example – will influence their reactions. The circuit-breaking measures have already been extended to June 1. If the epidemic continues and they must be extended further, it will bring greater uncertainty and place society under increasing psychological pressure. Simply providing more information cannot bring relief.

While the epidemic will eventually pass, another challenge lies ahead in the form of economic reconstruction. Maintaining mental wellbeing will be essential in promoting national social solidarity and cohesiveness while supporting future economic revitalization and harmonious social development.


Education During the Pandemic
Friday, May 8, 2020
Education During the Pandemic

Agus Harimurti Yudhoyono, Chairman, Democratic Party, in Media Indonesia (May 8, 2020) 

Summary by Keith Loveard (Photo credit: King Fajr / Shutterstock.com)

Education During the Pandemic

Along with virtually all parents at this time, my wife and I have to accept responsibility for helping our child study at home. Like others, we have to admit that explaining various lessons and assisting our children in their schoolwork is not as easy as we thought. And it now appears that the face of education in Indonesia is going to be changed enormously because of the pandemic. 

Online education is not simple. It requires personal discipline and certain facilities. I am grateful that I am able to assist our child. But I am also aware of the complaints of many other parents and people working in the education system about the availability of smartphones or laptops and an internet connection. In simple terms, online learning has the potential to expand socioeconomic inequity. Some are facing the very difficult choice of spending on food for their families or paying for their children’s education.

The potential for students dropping out of school is high. There are already indications of higher drop-out rates in Papua, North Maluku and Jakarta, all areas badly affected by the pandemic.


Strengthening China-Africa Ties in the Face of Covid-19 Challenges
Thursday, May 7, 2020
Strengthening China-Africa Ties in the Face of Covid-19 Challenges

Liu Zhaoyi, Director, South Africa Branch, Institute of African Studies, Zhejiang Normal University, in Global Times (April 30, 2020)

Summary by Alan Yang Gregory (Photo credit: GCIS, Republic of South Africa)

Strengthening China-Africa Ties in the Face of Covid-19 Challenges

The spread of Covid-19 across Africa has coincided with some negative comments against China in African media and on local social media platforms. These include conspiracy theories about the origin of the virus and claims that China is using aid to further control Africa.

The West, meanwhile, is waging a smear campaign against China by bandying terms such as “neo-colonialism” and “resource plundering”. These slurs have intensified during the Covid-19 crisis, influencing public opinion, particularly in the countries of Sub-Saharan Africa. Mainstream media in the West inevitably drown out Chinese voices. To counter this, China needs to consider the following:

First, the attitudes and policies of African governments towards China evolve with the external situation. As governments again look to maximize their own interests, the re-emergence of business pragmatism will prompt governments to repair their relationship with China.

Second, even with provocation from the West, there is no real anti-China wave in Africa. Rather, any acrimony is a result of emotions stemming from mounting economic pressure. This issue will eventually fade.

Third, some African politicians have the politicized the epidemic. Yet the African people remain kind hearted, even though public opinion may have been swayed by simplistic messages from external forces.

Fourth, the epidemic has made China-Africa bilateral research institutes, think tanks, non-governmental organizations and institutions realize that exchanges cannot rely on seminars and workshops. Instead, Chinese actors should come to Africa with clear goals, better planning and long-term strategies.

Finally, the importance of youth should not be overlooked. Chinese youth can show the next generation of young Africans that China is not just powerful and wealthy but can still relate to Africa on many levels and issues such as poverty alleviation, employment and development. China and Africa can therefore face common challenges and solve problems together.


Centrists Have No Room For Survival in the Current Political Climate
Thursday, May 7, 2020
Centrists Have No Room For Survival in the Current Political Climate

Kam Man-fung, director, Hong Kong Association of Young Commentators, and district councillor (2016-19), in Ming Pao (April 29, 2020)

Summary by Alan Yang Gregory (Photo credit: Tksteven)

Centrists Have No Room For Survival in the Current Political Climate

A number of centrists have emerged through Hong Kong’s recent district council elections. They argue that Hong Kong is too polarized and needs to find a new “middle way”. But can Hong Kong still accommodate centrists today?

Many individuals certainly have a centrist approach to politics. From "left or right of center" to "pro-integration” to “status-quo” to “pro-independence", Hong Kong society has varying levels of degrees of agreement or disagreement on different issues. Even though an individual may hold economic interests in the mainland, they could still have reservations about the Chinese government and yet be neither “pro China” nor “anti China”.

Inside the Legislative Council, this is not the case. Yet Hong Kong was not always so polarized. Even though politicians may hold different voting priorities on a range of issues from economics to LGBT rights, today, following the anti-extradition-bill protest movement, Hong Kong is now polarized – pro or anti China. In this atmosphere, all other important issues that our society faces are overshadowed.

Nevertheless, some still believe that centrists can survive in today’s political climate. This is naïve. You need only ask a so-called centrist a number of revealing questions – for example, whether they would support the immediate passing of Article 23 (internal security) legislation. If they were opposed, then the pro-China faction would view them as anti China rather than as centrist, and vice-versa.

As the Hong Kong Legislative Council election approaches, centrist candidates must think carefully about how they will respond to such questions. It is necessary to understand that the issues facing Hong Kong today are inherently political. And in this political struggle, centrists simply have no room for survival.


Even After the Epidemic, Wear Masks – and Stay Away from Wild Animals
Wednesday, May 6, 2020
Even After the Epidemic, Wear Masks – and Stay Away from Wild Animals

Wang Jen-hsien, Honorary Managing Director, Taiwan Counter Contagious Diseases Society (中华民国防疫学会), in China Times (May 3, 2020)

Summary by Alan Yang Gregory (Photo credit: Mori/Office of the President, Taiwan)

Even After the Epidemic, Wear Masks – and Stay Away from Wild Animals

The Covid-19 epidemic is almost over in Taiwan. Providing the Central Epidemic Command Centre (CECC) does not make any major mistakes, people should be able to resume normal work and activities within the month. Even after the epidemic, however, a new way of life must be developed to eliminate the threat of the virus returning entirely.

The successful defeat of the Covid-19 virus in Taiwan is a direct result of society’s efforts rather than the policies of the CECC. By adhering to the hygiene and symptom-management etiquette outlined by the World Health Organization (WHO), the public health was maintained.

This should continue. Masks should be placed at the center of daily life while the rest of the world battles the virus. Whether you have any symptoms or are simply visiting crowded areas or confined spaces such as public transport or elevators, everyone must take the initiative to wear masks.

Masks are also important because they are an alternative means to maintaining social-distancing practices. Keeping physically apart is just one aspect of a robust public-health policy, which includes vaccinations and wearing masks. As people resume normal interaction, it will be difficult to maintain social distance, so other ways to protect each other and ourselves such as wearing masks will be important.

Emerging infectious diseases can arise come from cross-animal transmission without mutations, as in the cases of AIDS and Ebola. It is, therefore, important to maintain our distance from wild animals including rodents and bats. Besides avoiding slaughtering wild animals, the development and construction of urban areas must take into account the habitats of wild animals so as not to avoid the transmission of infectious diseases to humans.

Only by continuing to wear masks and social distancing with wild animals can Taiwan become a leading example in the field of public health.


North-South Economic Cooperation Without Denuclearization?
Tuesday, May 5, 2020
North-South Economic Cooperation Without Denuclearization?

Lee Sang-hyun, Senior Research Fellow, The Sejong Institute, and President, Korea Nuclear Policy Society, in Munhwa Ilbo (May 1, 2020)

Summary by Soomi Hong (Photo credit: Cheong Wa Dae, The Republic of Korea)

North-South Economic Cooperation Without Denuclearization?

Following its recent sweeping re-election, the government has been accelerating its efforts to boost the North-South relations. On April 27, the second anniversary of the historic meeting between the two Korean leaders, President Moon Jae-in unilaterally announced four inter-Korean initiatives, including medical cooperation, a cross-border railway project, demilitarized zone (DMZ) peacekeeping, and reunification of separated family members. The government identified the restoration of the Gangneung-Jejin section of the Donghae Bukbu railway line as a priority among the four, launching it at Jejin Station.

The North, meanwhile, gave no official comment on any of the South’s initiatives. Recent speculation about the health of the North Korean leader would seem to render any possibility of significant cooperation unlikely. For any of the cooperative measures to result in major progress, the North would need to give a more concrete positive official response, with any steps taken in coordination with the international community.

Amidst the global pandemic, all talk of denuclearization is currently on hold and the North is still subject to various UN sanctions. The US has been consistent that any further economic cooperation with the North can only be taken in lockstep with measures for denuclearization.

The denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula has long past being just a Korean issue. For lasting peace and security, all cooperative steps must be coordinated among the four parties: the North, the South, the US and the international community. Despite its recent political success, the South Korean government must not rely on groundless hope that pursuing bilateral cooperation and providing material aid would somehow improve the relations and prompt the North to denuclearize.


It is Time to Open Up – or the Cure Will be Worse Than the Disease
Tuesday, May 5, 2020
It is Time to Open Up – or the Cure Will be Worse Than the Disease

Barkha Dutt, journalist, in her column in Hindustan Times (May 1, 2020)

Summary by Alejandro Reyes (Photo credit: Raam Gottimukkala/Pixabay)

It is Time to Open Up – or the Cure Will be Worse Than the Disease

India has extended the national lockdown with some relaxation. The government should have been more liberal in opening up. Other than districts in severely hit red zones, the rest of the country needed to be given space to breathe again. A greater calamity than Covid-19 – humanitarian, social and economic – is imminent if a uniform lockdown is continued.

This is not to argue that the clampdown and enforced physical distancing did not serve their purpose. The number of infections would have been substantially higher had the decision not been taken to shut down the nation.

But India is a global outlier in the number of fatalities from the pandemic. Whatever the reasons, the death rate is not higher than that of other diseases that claim Indian lives every day.

In the meantime, there are other grave crises emerging. Among them is the lack of access to health care for poor citizens.

The biggest gear shift needed is in that of attitude. While aggressive contact tracing and quarantine are essential, we cannot treat testing positive as a doomsday scenario. We have been shutting down housing societies, hospitals, factories and workplaces if even one person tests positive. If every case triggers panic, we shall never be able to rebuild our lives.

How to kickstart the economy should have all our attention. The biggest flaw in a lockdown is that it quarantines healthy people. What’s needed is not a sledgehammer that clamps down, but a sieve that sifts those who really need medical help from those who can just stay at home.

The lockdown has served its purpose. More of this will be a cure worse than the disease.


Be Realistic About Participation in the World Health Organization
Tuesday, May 5, 2020
Be Realistic About Participation in the World Health Organization

Chiang Huang-chih, Professor of International Law, National Taiwan University (NTU), in Liberty Times (May 4, 2020)

Summary by Alan Yang Gregory (Photo credit: Eric Bridiers/United States Mission Geneva)

Be Realistic About Participation in the World Health Organization

Taiwan first started to call for it to participate in World Health Organization (WHO) activities in 1995. This year, there appears to be great deal of optimism that this goal might be achieved. At the end of December 2019, Taiwan appealed to the WHO secretariat to pay attention to cases of unknown pneumonia in China. Subsequently, Taiwan demonstrated an outstanding ability to tackle the Covid-19 pandemic. This has helped boost Taiwan’s reputation, with the United States and Japan strongly supporting Taiwan’s participation as an observer in the WHO.

Despite the optimism, the public should manage their expectations. First, the epidemic in Europe has not been completely controlled. As a result, the World Health Assembly (WHA), the governing forum of the WHO, will be held online this year, with the pandemic the focus of discussions. The possibility that Taiwan’s role will be discussed is unlikely. As such, Taiwan’s participation is by no means guaranteed.

Second, the countries that support Taiwan’s participation in WHO activities only express their support for Taiwan as an observer. Previously, such participation has been based on the "1992 Consensus” and as such, would ultimately be determined by China. It is also important to note that there are many types of observers. As Taiwan experienced by having an observer seat from 2009 to 2016, this approach can actually be harmful to Taiwan ’s international status.

If possible, it is necessary to seek further joint proposals from the United States and Japan to allow Taiwan to participate in the voting on resolutions in the Assembly. The benefit of a democratic society is that it is possible to congregate and gather ideas. People seem to be too optimistic about participation in this year’s WHA. For now, it is best to remain both cautious and patient.


Looking to the Future and Preparing for the Post-Epidemic Era
Friday, May 1, 2020
Looking to the Future and Preparing for the Post-Epidemic Era

He Shuquan, Professor, School of Economics, Shanghai University, in Guangming Daily (April 28, 2020)

Summary by Alan Yang Gregory (Photo credit: Magda Ehlers/Pexels)

Looking to the Future and Preparing for the Post-Epidemic Era

The Covid-19 outbreak has had a huge economic impact on all countries around the world. After the pandemic, while globalization and global value chains will exhibit new trends of development, the fundamentals will not change.

First, Covid-19 has emerged at a time when global value and supply chains are deeply interconnected. As a result, the social and economic impact on countries affected by the virus will be more extensive.

Second, today's global production network and value chains have made the international trading system more and more complicated. Local demand-side and supply-side shocks can quickly spread to other countries, industries and sectors across the global value chain. Meanwhile, the negative impact on companies will also affect the global financial market.

Third, unlike previous economic and financial crises, the cause of the turmoil originated from outside the economic system. This means that the strength and resilience of various sectors and firms will determine their comparative advantages going forward.

Fourth, while the digital economy has shown an impressive rise and become a new hotspot for industrial development, the fundamentals of economic globalization and global value chains will not change. The physical manufacturing capacity of each country alongside the core competitiveness of firms will remain the key factors that support economic growth and development.

Finally, national public-health security will become a more important part of the business environment and a factor in international competitiveness. Multinational companies will pay greater attention to a host country's medical and public-health system as well as the government's ability to respond to epidemics. In addition, firms will put more focus on the resilience of supply chains.

In sum, opportunities are always reserved for those who are prepared. The epidemic will pass, but we must take a long-term perspective and prepare for the post-epidemic era.


Change the Name of China Airlines
Wednesday, April 29, 2020
Change the Name of China Airlines

Fu An-tang, senior aviation industry executive, in Liberty Times (April 27, 2020)

Summary by Alan Yang Gregory (Photo credit: Michel Teiten)

Change the Name of China Airlines

Taiwan’s China Airlines recently delivered Covid-19 medical supplies to Europe. This story prompted some confusion among the international media which incorrectly reported that China rather than Taiwan made the donation. This error has prompted a heated discussion over whether the airline should change its name to “Taiwan Airlines”.

Practically speaking, changing the name would be a huge, time-consuming, labor-intensive and costly project. Not only would it require changes to the centralized reservation system and transportation supply networks, but it would also require a lengthy rebranding process. Furthermore, changing the name would likely result in the airline facing a ban from flying to mainland destinations. Nevertheless, the decision must still be carefully considered.

One feasible solution could be to change the name of Mandarin Airlines, a subsidiary of the China Airlines Group. As China Airlines holds nearly 94 percent of the shares of Mandarin Airlines, the decision would be practical. In addition, only a small number of mainland destinations are served by this subsidiary. Even if they were banned by the mainland, it would have minimal impact on the China Airlines Group.

Potential steps could be as follows: Mandarin applies to the International Air Transport Association (IATA) and other international bodies to change its name to “Taiwan Airlines”. The fleet is rebranded, and Taiwan Airlines begins to negotiations with countries around the world to serve existing air routes. China Airlines could gradually transfer more of its fleet to the renamed carrier. If some countries should refuse to accept the new entity due to pressure from Beijing, China Airlines could continue to serve those routes.


Look Beyond the Gossip: Prepare for Reunification
Tuesday, April 28, 2020
Look Beyond the Gossip: Prepare for Reunification

Park Hwee-rhak, professor of politics, Kookmin University, in Seoul Economic Daily (April 26, 2020)

Summary by Soomi Hong (Photo credit: Victoria Borodinova/Pixabay)

Look Beyond the Gossip: Prepare for Reunification

Lately, there has been much speculation on the health of the North Korean leader. Despite the strong denial from Pyongyang, the uncertainties surrounding Kim Jong Un’s condition remain. While there may be hopes that his demise could improve North-South relations, this is unlikely as we saw in 1994 and in 2011 when the two previous DPRK leaders suddenly died. North Korea will again secretively select a new leader and any likelihood of the new leadership having a different attitude towards peace is unlikely.

In the international community, South and North Korea are regarded as two independent countries that separately and simultaneously joined the UN. Despite the aspirations for reunification, it would be the UN Security Council rather than South Korea that would handle a sudden collapse of DPRK. There have even been reports that back in 2009 the Americans reviewing divide-and-control scenarios in preparation of a North Korean meltdown. If the North were to disintegrate, it is unlikely that our ally the US would respect South Korea’s Constitution and refrain from dividing the DPRK among China, Russia and itself.

What South Korea needs at the moment is not speculation and gossip about the DPRK leadership but solid preparation for how realistically to achieve reunification when such an opportunity might appear. According to the Republic of Korea Constitution, reunification may only be achieved through peaceful means. Only such a reunification would legitimize a unified Korean peninsula in the face of those that may prefer to divide the current DPRK territory. South Korea has a successful model: West Germany encouraged the East to choose reunification and then saw the German reunification legitimized when the East voted on the measure. If the two Koreas follow in the footsteps of the Germans, the international community would have no choice but to accept their reunification.


I Hear My King Calling
Tuesday, April 28, 2020
I Hear My King Calling

Karma Pedey, Professor, Norbuling Rigter College, in Kuensel (April 25, 2020)

Summary by Alejandro Reyes (Photo credit: Gelay Jamtsho)

I Hear My King Calling

The Bhutanese national character and the personality that sets us apart; the national consciousness and identity that so distinctly has become our own today, is the result of the unbending resolution and sharp vision of our kings.

Each era gave birth to a Dragon King as an antidote to the ills and adversities of the time. Each Druk Gyalpo has served a purpose higher than self; each answered the daunting calls of the nation.

When our Druk Gyalpo Jigme Khesar Namgyel Wangchuck took over the helm, he embodied the continuity of the great Wangchuck legacy. With his all-embracing love and compassion, His Majesty personified our hopes and dreams.

Today, as the icy hands of Covid-19 grips the world, our king once again struck a deep chord in both the young and the old, as he rushed out to answer the country’s toughest call. Even as many mighty countries lie staggering and broken, we once again stand tall, unafraid and confident, daring to face this Covid-19 storm together.

The National Resilience Fund has provided shelter, created employment, relieved the burden of loan payment and touched the lives of each Bhutanese deeply, lifting their morale and optimism. If the country’s economy doesn’t serve the purpose of its people in times of their need, why have a strong economy, our king reasoned with compassion.

The battle is not over yet. We have heard the emotionally charged words of His Majesty, reassuring us yet cautioning us to remain alert to the possible pitfalls and dangers that can simply come from a careless person’s mistake which can undo everything we have achieved so far. This bids us to gather our heads and hearts to make a personal pledge to take full responsibility to align our efforts and behavior to our king’s efforts to beat Covid-19.