Singapore and Indonesia leaders to meet in person during a retreat later this year

Published:Dec 5, 202316:52
Singapore and Indonesia leaders to meet in person during a retreat later this year

JAKARTA: The leaders of Singapore and Indonesia will meet in particular person throughout a retreat to be held later this 12 months, mentioned the international ministers of each international locations on Thursday (Mar 25).

In a joint press convention, Dr Vivian Balakrishnan mentioned: "I think in our earlier discussion, we had looked at, particularly Bintan. And perhaps that as being a site for which we can convene our Leaders' Retreat."

"So the Leaders' Retreat will proceed this year, watch out for the date. Our two leaders will meet in person," he mentioned, including that there might be a full agenda. 

His Indonesian counterpart Retno Marsudi mentioned: "We agreed to propose to our leaders to have the in-person Leaders' Retreat in 2021.

"This 12 months, the important thing theme of our cooperation is how we get well collectively from the pandemic," she added. 

Mdm Marsudi revealed three points to be highlighted, specifically funding cooperation, cautious preparation for reviving the journey and tourism sector as effectively digital economic system cooperation.

Dr Balakrishnan famous that throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, each side managed to make substantial progress on the bilateral entrance.

As each international locations are actually seeing the variety of COVID-19 infections coming down and are rolling their vaccination programmes, he mentioned it's time to begin planning and collaborating on post-COVID-19 restoration. 

"So the ideas which have resulted will now be implemented in the coming months to come," he mentioned.

On the financial entrance, the minister mentioned that Singapore has remained the most important international investor in Indonesia for six years in a row.

"And last year, despite the challenges, the FDI (foreign direct investment) into Indonesia from Singapore went up almost 50 per cent. It reflects the vote of confidence in Indonesia, in the prospects of economic growth, and confidence in Indonesia’s future. And this happened in the time of a crisis."

He additionally touched on bilateral tasks together with the Kendal Industrial Park in Central Java, which he mentioned has been progressing effectively.

He mentioned there may be now a necessity to advertise the event of a port to assist the industrial park's growth.   

Referring to the digital park in Nongsa, Batam, he mentioned: "I'm very proud to see that develop.

"We truly now have a digital bridge from Singapore to Batam. And as globalisation and digital revolution are happening, I see nice prospects for that bridge to grow to be a vibrant connector."

He believed that the digital park will bring opportunities for youths in Singapore as well as in Indonesia. 

Commenting on tourism, Dr Balakrishnan said that he met Indonesia's tourism minister Sandiaga Uno earlier in the day. 

"We're , because the scenario improves ... gradual and protected reopening of journey preparations. And once more we're areas of mutual curiosity, he mentioned.   

Over the weekend, Mr Uno mentioned preparations can start for a “safe travel corridor” between Singapore, Batam Nongsa and Bintan Lagoi.

READ: Singapore-Batam-Bintan 'journey hall' meant for Singapore vacationers solely, says Indonesian minister

Earlier on Thursday, Mr Uno mentioned in a press convention that the 2 international locations will focus on the small print of the journey hall. He mentioned Dr Balakrishnan has invited him to go to Singapore to attempt the route from Tanah Merah Ferry Terminal to Batam Nongsa and Bintan Lagoi.

"We will continue to increase the discussion to a more detailed level. Hopefully, in the next few weeks we can convey the progress," mentioned Mr Uno. 

(ks) Bintan beach
Banyan Tree Bintan's personal seaside. (Picture: Kiki Siregar)

Mr Uno mentioned that the small print and the date of the journey association have been nonetheless being finalised, together with whether or not Apr 21 may be the opening date as he initially advised. 

He additionally revealed that each side have mentioned a doable journey hall between Singapore and Bali, as there could also be Singaporeans who wish to work from Bali.


Dr Balakrishnan and Mdm Marsudi additionally mentioned the newest scenario in Myanmar. 

“We are both very distressed by the situation in Myanmar. I can say that the position that both Indonesia and Singapore take are virtually identical," said Dr Balakrishnan.

"We are gravely concerned with the situation. We’re distressed by the loss of human life, by the use of lethal arms on unarmed civilians. 

"We both believe that national reconciliation needs to occur and can only occur if both sides actually sit down in good faith, negotiate, and find a solution that works for Myanmar for the long term."

Dr Balakrishnan stated that both countries believe that there should be no foreign interference but ASEAN is ready to help. 

"And therefore, we also support our leaders getting together to generate a common position in which ASEAN can express its support for Myanmar. So there’s a lot of work that we need to do on that front, therefore, that ASEAN meeting.”

In the meantime, Mdm Marsudi additionally mentioned that Indonesia is anxious with the scenario in Myanmar. 

"We additionally shared our place to name on the Myanmar navy to cease the usage of drive and stop additional casualties. We additionally urged Myanmar to start out a dialogue to place democracy, peace and stability again on observe," said Mdm Marsudi.

"Indonesia and Singapore additionally assist the initiative to carry the ASEAN Leaders’ Summit within the close to future. Our purpose to attain an ASEAN Neighborhood can solely be achieved with the contribution of all ASEAN Members," she added. 

Dr Balakrishnan is in Jakarta for a two-day working visit.

Earlier this week, he visited Brunei where he had an audience with Sultan Hassanal Bolkiah and was hosted to lunch by Second Minister of Foreign Affairs Erywan Pehin Yusof. 

Brunei is currently chair of the 10-member Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN).

READ: Malaysia, Singapore use blockchain technology for COVID-19 vaccination certificates

On Tuesday and Wednesday, Dr Balakrishnan visited Malaysia and both countries reaffirmed their commitment to work towards recognising one another’s COVID-19 vaccine certificates, with a view in the direction of facilitating cross-border journey sooner or later.

He'll head again to Singapore on Friday night.


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