President Jokowi Invites India to Optimize Indian Ocean Potential
President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo invited India to optimize the cooperation to unlock the great potential of the Indian Ocean in a sustainable manner.
“So far, the cooperation between ASEAN and India has been bringing concrete benefits for the people. Nevertheless, we still need to optimize our collaboration especially considering the huge potential of the Indian Ocean which connects 33 countries with 2.9 billion people which is projected to be one fifth of world GDP in 2025,” President Jokowi said when opening the 20th ASEAN-India Summit, Jakarta, Thursday (09/07).
The potential needs to be further strengthened to promote the development of sustainable blue energy, food security, maritime connectivity, and marine resources. In that regard, ASEAN and India need to enhance their cooperation in tackling maritime crimes.
“We must also tackle maritime crimes such as piracy, drug crimes, human smuggling and illegal, unregulated, and unreported (IUU) fishing,” he said.
The President went on to say that sea should be a place for cooperation, not confrontation. He also called on all sides to maintain stability and peace in the region.
“We should be able to create a sea of cooperation, not a sea of confrontation. We must maintain the [regional] stability and peace, as well as respect international law, promote habit of cooperation, and build an inclusive regional architecture. This is the key to realizing the region as the epicentrum of growth,” he said.
On that occasion, the President also extended his appreciation to Prime Minister of India Narendra Modi for attending the ASEAN-India Summit despite his tight schedule in preparing the upcoming G20 Summit to be held on September 9-10, 2023. (DND/UN) (RAS/MMB)