Minister Retno: Nikai Promotes Enhancement in Indonesia-Japan Relations
Date 23 November 2015
Minister of Foreign Affairs Retno Marsudi explained the reason why Toshihiro Nikai, the Chairman of Japan-Indonesia Parliament League was bestowed an honorary title by the President of the Republic of Indonesia Joko Jokowi Widodo. Retno said that Toshihiro Nikai plays a great role in bilateral relations between Indonesia and Japan.
Mr. Nikai is the Chairman of the Japan-Indonesia Parliament League. He is a figure who always encourages the enhancement of Indonesia-Japan bilateral relations. He is the person who promoted Indonesia to get visa-free entry to Japan and he also encouraged to strengthen the cooperation, such as in nurse training, Retno said to the reporters after accompanying President Jokowi bestowed Bintang Jasa Utama (an honorary medal) upon Toshihiro Nikai at the State Palace, on Monday (23/11) afternoon.
Thus, from time to time, the Minister added, Toshihiro Nikai is a figure who tries to make Indonesia-Japan relations closer.
Regarding the meeting between Japan-Indonesia Parliament League and President Jokowi, the Minister said, strong commitment of both countries to keep enhancing bilateral relations was delivered on the event.
The meeting also discussed visa-free entry which has been granted by Japan to Indonesia. Thus, it is Japan that provided us visa-free entry facility first, the Minister said.
Through visa-free entry facility for Japanese citizens to enter Indonesia, the Minister hopes it will significantly boost the number of Japanese tourists to Indonesia.
The Minister said that Nikai have promised to bring a large group of people and the promise is fulfilled lately when he brought 1,100 Japanese to Indonesia, who came from different elements, from central government, regional governments, tourists, businessmen and others.
Furthermore, Japan also offered a cooperation in agriculture, particularly in irrigation matter and provide scholarship in agricultural sector, including agricultural technology.
So far, there are 20 people who were invited to be trained in Japan. I will asked for the details to him (Mr. Nikai), Retno said.
Regarding cooperation in other sectors, President Jokowi said Indonesia applies an open economic system that allowed us to conduct cooperation in economy with any country, including Japan.
Asked about whether Japan, as the result of this meeting, will build new seaports in Indonesia or not, Retno answered that President Jokowi is open to establish the cooperation, including with Japan.
Minister Retno also said that in previous meeting in Malaysia, Prime Minister of Japan Shinzo Abe considered Indonesia as Japans strategic partner that has a long-established friendship with Japan. Therefore, the relations between both countries is expected to be improved in the future.
The message delivered by both leaders is clear. It is reflected in previous meeting in Kuala Lumpur and it is clearer when Japan-Indonesia Parliament League brought 1,100 Japanese. I think this group is enormous, Retno said.
The Minister asserted that this is not Japan-Indonesia Parliament Leagues first visit to Indonesia, since previously they conducted a visit in March. (FID/JAY/WID/ES) (RAS/MMB/YM/Naster)