ASEAN-India Commemorative Summit: a New Milestone in the Partnership Cooperation between ASEAN and India

The recent ASEAN – India Commemorative Summit that took place in New Delhi, India (20/12/12) was the pinnacle of the 20th commemoration of cooperation between ASEAN and India and it also marked the new milestone in the partnership between the two parties.
In his remarks at the Summit, the Indonesian President specifically underlined four crucial areas that need to be prioritized to enhance the existing partnership between ASEAN and India in the future, i.e. economics and trade, food and energy security, people-to-people connectivity and cooperation in maritime affairs.
The President’s remarks was greeted positively by the attending ASEAN and Indian leaders and they also agreed to increase cooperation in politics and security by improving dialogues and cooperation in bilateral and multilateral forums on various regional and international issues that concerned the two parties. Include among such issues are the fight against terrorism, efforts to improve cooperation in maritime security and collaboration with regard to challenges in non-traditional security.
In the economic sector, the leaders of ASEAN and India also highlighted the fact that the trade between ASEAN and India is the most successful sector in the current partnership.
The value of trade between ASEAN and India has gone beyond the designated target for the year 2012, which was US$ 70 billion. In that regard, during the Summit, leaders of ASEAN and India have agreed to raise the target for trade between the two parties to an even higher figure of US$ 100 billion by 2015.
The Summit between the leaders of ASEAN and India also extended a special appreciation to the Economic Ministers of ASEAN countries and India who had successfully completed the negotiation of the remaining two free trade agreements between ASEAN and India, namely agreements in the service sector and KTT investment. “An effective implementation of the two agreements would open an even wider opportunity for both parties, not to mention boosting India’s participation in the negotiation on Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP)”.
The main outcome of this Commemorative Summit was the adoption of the ‘Vision Statement of the ASEAN-India Commemorative Summit’ by the leaders of ASEAN and India. The document is the latest historical document in the framework of cooperation between ASEAN and India; it specifically sums up the declaration by the leaders of ASEAN and India on elevating the existing partnership between ASEAN and India into a level of strategic partnership.
In addition to the Summit, there were other events held to commemorate the 20th anniversary of cooperation between ASEAN and India, among others, the expedition by the Indian Navy training ship INS Sudarshini, the ASEAN-India Car Rally and several seminars between scholars and businesspersons from ASEAN countries and India.
The flag-down ceremony for the ASEAN-India Car Rally took place in Vigyan Bhavan – New Delhi, India (21/12) and it marked the conclusion of the car rally that started with the first stage from Yogyakarta to Solo and went through 8 ASEAN countries. The rally covered a total distance of more than 8,000 km. It was hoped that the ASEAN-India Car Rally would strengthen connectivity between the people of ASEAN and India, especially personal contact and people-to-people connectivity.

In the future, it is expected that the relationship between the people of ASEAN and India would be even stronger and bring in more benefits in trade and partnership and elevate the relationship between ASEAN and India into a higher level (source: Dit.MWAK/Ditjen KSA/Dit. Infomed/Ed.PY/ trans. Hari).

Indonesia Encourages Russia to Take an Active Role in ASEAN

Russia and ASEAN member countries possess a tremendous potential for cooperation that could be pushed even further. In this regard, Indonesia is encouraging Russia to take a more active role in realizing the goal of ASEAN connectivity 2015.


The above was stated by the Indonesian Ambassador to ASEAN I Gede Ngurah Swajaya at the forum entitled “ASEAN and the Russian Federation: Towards a Progressive and Comprehensive Partnership” that took place at the Moscow State University of International Relations (MGIMO), Moscow (17/12). Ambassador Ngurah Swajaya also stated that such cooperation might be carried out in a three pillared scheme, i.e. politic and security, economy and socio-cultural.


Cooperation prospects between the two parties include, among others, cooperation in the field of education and technology, energy, economics, trade and investment, tourism, people-to-people contact and eradicating transnational crimes.


“The Russian Federation is one of ASEAN’s important dialogue partners, and as such there are numerous opportunities for cooperation between the two parties, including infrastructure development, such as the construction of railway lines that connect ASEAN countries”, said Ambassador Ngurah Swajaya.


On the other hand, the Special Envoy of the Russian Federation’s Foreign Ministry for the region of Asia-Pacific and ASEAN Ambassador Alexander Ivanov who attended the forum as a speaker stated that maintaining stability in the region is crucial for advancing the development and cooperation between the parties.

He also added that with its potential, Russia could fulfill the needs of ASEAN, whether it is on land, sea, air, or even below ground.


“Realization of a cooperation requires a mutual trust between the two parties”, said Ambassador Ivanov who recently ended his term as the Ambassador of the Russian Federation to Indonesia.


The forum, which was organized as a collaborative effort between the Indonesian Embassy in Moscow and MGIMO with 80 participants, including, among others, government officials, scholars, business persons and students. The attendees also include Ambassadors and staff of ASEAN embassies in Moscow.


Besides Ambassador Ngurah Swajaya and Ambassador Ivanov, the forum also featured the Director of ASEAN Center at MGIMO Victor Sumsky and the Executive Director of Russia-ASEAN Business Council Victor Tarusin.


During his stay in Russia, Ambassador Ngurah Swajaya also held a general lecture for the students and staff lecturers of St. Petersburg State University on the latest development in ASEAN, the role of Indonesia in ASEAN and the relationship between Russia and ASEAN.


The Indonesian Ambassador to the Russian Federation who also doubled as the Ambassador to the Republic of Belarus Djauhari Oratmangun said that the event was intended to strengthen the relationship among ASEAN communities in Russia and advancing the cooperation between ASEAN and Russia.


“The event was also intended to provide insight to the Russian people on issues pertaining to ASEAN, the role of Indonesia in ASEAN and the relationship between Russia and ASEAN”, said Ambassador Djauhari who formerly served as the Director General of ASEAN Cooperation of the Indonesian Ministry of Foreign Affairs (source: Embassy of the Republic of Indonesia Moscow/ Enjay Diana/ trans. Hari).

Indonesian Ambassador Underlines Indonesia’s Commitment to Boost Cooperation with FAO

The Indonesian Ambassador August Parengkuan submitted a Letter of Introduction to the Director General of Food and Agricultural Organization (FAO) Dr. Graziano da Silva, at FAO’s headquarter in Rome, Italy (17/12).


In the subsequent meeting after the ceremony, Ambassador August Parengkuan conveyed his mission, which is to boost the well-established cooperation between FAO and the Government of Indonesia.


The Ambassador also hoped that FAO and other UN agencies would provide more opportunities for Indonesian professionals to work for FAO, because Indonesians are  still under represented in many international organizations.


In turn, the Director General of FAO expressed his appreciation on the cooperation and support provided by the Indonesian Government in various programs pertaining to the reformation, transformation and decentralization of FAO and for its programs under the scheme of South-South cooperation.


On the same day, the Indonesian Ambassador also met and delivered another Letter of Introduction to the President of the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) Mr. Kanayo Nwanze in his office in Rome, Italy.


Previously, Ambassador August Parengkuan has submitted his Letter of Credentials as the Indonesian Ambassador to the President of the Republic of Italy Giorgio Napolitano (11/12) (source: Embassy of the Republic of Indonesia Rome)

One Decade of Bali Process Inventing the Next Step

Countries from Asia Pacific were turning up in Nusa Dua, Bali to commemorate the ten anniversary of the Bali Process (12-13/11). The commemoration of one decade of Bali Process was held as part of the Conference on “Bali Process Experience” and the forum on “Advancing Regional Cooperation on Trafficking in Persons” and was attended by representatives from 25 countries, 5 regional and international organizations and several Regional Consultative Processes.
“The Bali Process’ countries must decide on the next concrete step to optimize the cooperation of Bali Process”, said the Director General of Multilateral of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs Hasan Kleib when he opened the events.
According to Ambassador Hasan, the tenth anniversary of the Bali process should also be used to reflect on the number of achievements and challenges faced by the Bali Process. Specifically, with regard to the management of human trafficking and trafficking in persons in the region of Asia Pacific.
“Currently, the biggest challenge of the Bali Process is the management of irregular migration, which is increasing comprehensively”, explained Ambassador Hasan Kleib.
Root causes of the problem, including economic disparities and political problems in the country of origin must be taken into account and addressed, in addition to managing the problems in the transit or country of destination.
Furthermore, Ambassador Hassan also talked about practical regional cooperation, he talked about cooperation which is doable and implementable that should be the focus and priority for the development of the Bali process in the future.
Similar to what Ambassador Hasan said, the Australian Ambassador for Human Smuggling Affairs Craig Chittick also expressed his hope for the next and concrete step for the Bali Process. “Until now, the Bali Process has played an important role in managing the problem of irregular immigration in the region”, he said.
In this regard, Ambassador Craig hoped the agreement on Regional Cooperation Framework and the establishment a Regional Support Office in Bangkok may serve as the starting point for a realizing a cooperation in the management of people smuggling and trafficking in persons in a more concrete and practical manner.
The tenth anniversary of the Bali Process was co-chaired by Ambassador Hasan Kleib and Ambassador Craig Chittick.
The Bali Process was established to cope with the increasing irregular migration and the flow of people smuggling and trafficking in persons in the region of Asia-Pacific. In that regard, between 2002 and 2003, Indonesia and Australia initiated the Bali Regional Ministerial Meeting on People Smuggling, Trafficking in Person and Related Transnational Crime (BRMC I and BRMC II).
The two meetings resulted in a Regional Consultative Process (RCP) known as the Bali Process on People Smuggling, Trafficking in Persons and Related Transnational Crime (Bali Process) wherein Indonesia and Australia act as co-chairs (source: Directorate of International Security and Disarmament / Ed.PY/ trans.Hari).

FM Marty to Receive FM Nikola Poposki of Macedonia

FM Marty M. Natalegawa is scheduled to receive Macedonian FM Nikola Poposki’s visit tomorrow, Tuesday (13/11/2012). Responding to Marty’s invitation, Poposki accompanied by 4 delegates is making a state visit to Indonesia, on 13-17 November 2012.

Such visit is aimed to increase the bilateral relationships between RI and Macedonia.

Marty and his Macedonian counterpart will conduct a bilateral meeting and discuss the plan to improve the bilateral relationships in the field of politics, trade and economic cooperation, and socio-cultural cooperation.

In addition, the two foreign ministers will exchange their views on bilateral issues and the regional as well as global issues of mutual concerns.

During the visit, FM Poposki will pay courtesy calls to the Deputy Speaker of People’s Consultative Assembly (MPR) and the Coordinating Minister of Economy. Poposki is also scheduled to deliver a short presentation at the Chamber of Commerce on the trade, economic, and investment opportunities between the two countries.

RI-Macedonia Bilateral Cooperation

Since Indonesia’s acknowledgement towards Macedonia’s independence on 25 May 1993, the bilateral relations between the two countries have experienced positive development. This is reflected from the increasing trade volume between the two countries over the years.

In 2010, the total trade volume between the two countries amounted to US$ 6.77 billion, and in 2011, the total trade volume reached the number of US$ 9.83 billion, or increased by 45%.

The total trade value for January-August 2012 period amounted to US$ 10.5 billion, raising by 287 % compared to the one for the same period in 2011 (US$ 2.70 billion).

Macedonia is a one of the successor state of the former Yugoslavia, from which it declared independence based on a referendum in 8 September 1991 Macedonia has a population of 2,055,004 million people with per-capita income of U.S. $ 5,012 (2011) or the GDP amounting to U.S. $ 10.32 billion (2011). Macedonia’s primary commodities are services, mining industry, and agricultural products. (Source: Dit. East and Central European Affairs/ed.Yo2k/ trans. Loyz.D/ Andk)