Indonesia-Australia Relations: A Friend in Need is A Friend Indeed
Date 10 Februari 2020
A friend in need is a friend indeed, President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo said before Australian Parliament in Canberra, Monday (10/2).
The statement was made in accordance to the current Indonesia-Australia relationship.
“On 2 February 2020, the Indonesian National Defense Forces (TNI) and the National Disaster Management Agency (BNPB) sent a number of personnel to New South Wales to help the Australian Government to combat bushfires and explore cooperation on weather modification technology,” said President Jokowi.
“I also delivered a clear message to Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison on 23 December 2019, stating that Indonesia will always be with Australia in difficult times,” the President said.
Australia also has always been with Indonesia during difficult times, for example in time of disaster. President Jokowi mentioned Australia’s support during post-tsunami relief back in 2004.
“Nine Australian soldiers have died during evacuation of refugees in Aceh and Nias. They were patriots, they were Indonesia’s friends, they were heroes of humanity,” he added.
Both countries, the President added, are destined to be close neighbors and Australia is Indonesia’s closest friend.
Although Indonesia and Australia have different cultures, they share similar values, including diversity, tolerance, democracy, respect for human rights, and environmental protection.
“Moreover, Indonesian and Australian youth population also have something in common. Indonesia is currently entering a demographic bonus with population of young people aged 15-30 years reaches 63 million or 24 percent of the total population. Similar to Australia, Indonesian youth are also living in a democratic country, familiar with the latest technology and actively exchanging ideas across countries” President Jokowi said.
Most of them, the President continued, have a global outlook and willing to collaborate in innovation. This is a strong foundation to establish today’s and future relationship between Indonesia and Australia.
President Jokowi went on to say that the 70-year-old Indonesian-Australian friendship is a platinum period to strengthen cooperation.
“Not only government-to-government relations but also people-to-people contacts. The platinum year must be used to strengthen our partnership for the next 30 years and so on,” the President stated, adding that in 2050 when both countries hit 100 years of relationship, Indonesia and Australia will transform into major players in the region and the world.(MAY / EN)
Translated by: Estu Widyamurti
Reviewed by: Mia Medyana