26 Apr 2016
Jakarta Post, April 22-23
President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo has invited the Netherlands to invest in Indonesian infrastructure projects, particularly those that support Jokowi’s maritime sector development program. During his meeting with Netherlands Prime Minister Mark Rutte in The Hague on Friday local time, Jokowi expressed his appreciation for the Netherlands’ support of Indonesia’s maritime axis vision. “I invite Dutch companies to be involved in the construction of deep sea ports in eastern Indonesia,” Jokowi said in a statement issued by the Presidential communications team. The maritime axis plan, first announced during Jokowi’s 2014 presidential election campaign, aims to boost fisheries, ship construction, infrastructure and marine resource clusters as well as human-resource capacity building through vocational training programs. Jokowi said several Dutch companies had previously invested in maritime infrastructure projects, such as the seaport projects in Kuala Tanjung and Tanjung Priok. “I invite the Netherlands to participate in maritime infrastructure projects in Indonesia, namely Sorong deep sea port and Makassar deep seaport,” he added. He also stated that the Netherlands was one of Indonesia’s main partners in trade and investment in Europe. However, the value of bilateral trade has shown a decline recently. In 2014, the trade value reached US$ 4.89 billion, while in 2015 it was only $ 4.22 billion. Likewise, investment from the Netherlands’ in Indonesia also declined from $1.31 billion in 2015 to $1.73 billion in 2014. Jokowi said that to make Indonesian economy more open and competitive, the government had launched 11 packages of regulatory and economic reform, including a one-stop service at the Investment Coordination Board ( BKPM ) and a negative investment list updates.
Indonesia and the Netherlands signed business agreements worth US$ 606 million during President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo’s recent visit to the country.
The business agreements cover the construction of a solar panel plant in Surabaya, East Java; potato industry development, the Pancasila Palmerah Bridge and turbine power development in East Nusa Tenggara; and human resources capacity building in the maritime sector. Speaking at a business forum in The Hague on Friday, Jokowi assured businesspeople that Indonesia’s economy had shown resilience and even surprising growth, reaching 5.04 percent in the fourth quarter of 2015 despite global economic challenges. Indonesia’s economic stability was being driven by widespread infrastructure development and investment as its two engines of economic growth, the President said. As China’s economy experiences a period of transition, he continued, many companies would look to relocate their factories from China to Southeast Asia. “And of course Indonesia will also see advantages, especially as Indonesia is the largest economy in Southeast Asia,” he added. The President invited Dutch businesspeople to invest in Indonesia, adding that his government was continuously implementing deregulations to shorten licensing and to ease doing business in the country.
Jakarta Globe, April 21-23
Before completing his European tour, President Joko Widodo took time to visit Leiden University near The Hague on Friday (22/04), where he was welcomed by a small group of Indonesian students currently studying there. Joko took a guided tour around the university, including a statue-filled room. One of the statues pictured Hussein Djajadiningrat, the first Indonesian to achieve a doctoral degree there in 1913. The president also viewed some of the university’s historic documents before being taken to the Zweetkamertje (sweat chamber), a room where graduates used to wait before taking exams for their doctoral degrees.
Joko, accompanied by Foreign Minister Retno Marsudi, continued to the Noordeinde Palace in The Hague to meet with Dutch King Willem-Alexander and Queen Máxima before departing to Indonesia from Amsterdam Airport Schiphol. Earlier, Joko had also met with a forum of Dutch businessmen, resulting in four agreements with a total value of $606 million. The agreements include the construction of solar panel factory in Surabaya, East Java; construction of the Pancasila Palmerah Bridge, which will include turbines to generate electricity from tidal waves, in Larantuka, East Nusa Tenggara; and human resources development in Indonesia’s maritime sector.
Joko Meets Dutch PM Mark Rutte to Discuss Maritime Partnership
President Joko Widodo has focused on trade, investment, water management and a maritime partnership during a bilateral meeting with Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte at Catshuis, the prime minister’s official residence in The Hague, on Friday (22/04). ‘I am pleased to return PM Rutte’s visit in 2013, when I was still Jakarta Governor,’ Joko said, as quoted in a statement. ‘It is the first visit by an Indonesian president in the past 16 years.’ Joko pointed to the existing water management partnership, which will see the completion of a number of infrastructure projects to end flooding, shoreline abrasion and to supply clean water. The partnership agreement will be extended to 2020.
The president voiced his appreciation of Dutch support for maritime development, including in the fishery sector, shipyards and infrastructure such as ports. Dutch companies have participated in maritime infrastructure projects like Kuala Tanjung deep seaport and Tanjung Priok Port developments. ‘I am inviting the Netherlands to participate in Indonesia’s deep seaport Sorong and deep seaport Makassar projects,’ Joko added. Joko and Rutte witnessed the signing of partnership agreements for maritime, higher education and science by Foreign Minister Retno Marsudi.
Indonesian President Visits Netherlands for the First Time in 16 Years
President Joko Widodo marked the first official visit to the Netherlands by an Indonesian leader in 16 years on Friday (22/04). Former president Abdurrahman Wahid visited the nation in 2000. According to Foreign Minister Retno Marsudi, Joko will focus his visit on government-to-government issues, as he is scheduled to meet with the Netherlands monarchy Dutch King Willem-Alexander and Queen Maxima and Prime Minister Mark Rutte. ‘President Jokowi will meet with Dutch Prime Minister, Queen Maxima and King Willem-Alexander in his capacity as the United Nations adviser for inclusive economic issues,’ Retno said in a statement on Thursday. Joko will visit the Prime Minister’s official residence in Catshuis to sign agreements in research, higher education and the maritime sector. Following the meeting, the president will visit the Port of Rotterdam — one of the world’s oldest and busiest ports — as well as attending a discussion with 20 chief executives from Dutch companies in the maritime and water management sectors. He will also attend an Indonesia-Dutch Business Forum at the Amrath Kurhaus Grand Hotel, along with 15 Dutch company heads. ‘The Indonesia-Dutch Business Forum will produce a number of commitments with the value of $601.2 million,’ said Retno. The president is scheduled to meet with the royal couple at the Noordeinde Palace in the afternoon, before returning to Indonesia.
President Joko Widodo arrived in The Hague on Thursday (21/04), the next stop of his European tour, and headed straight to the Amrath Kurhaus Grand Hotel to meet Indonesian citizens residing in the Netherlands. Indonesians welcomed Joko with a banner spread, loud cheers and the reciting of “Indonesia Raya” before asking the president to take selfies. Joko’s speech focused on Indonesia’s place on the global stage, reflecting on the country’s potential and the gains to be made by assistance in competitiveness and transparency. He made the speech after an earlier impromptu visit to an exhibition featuring the works of Indonesian designers in London. “I am proud that Indonesian designers exhibited their works in an upscale department store in London. Their work is sold in a week, despite the Rp 30 million [$2,274] price tag,” Joko said. The president told the audience he had met with many European leaders to ensure participation in trade blocs, including the Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP). “This is the world we are facing now, we can’t say we do not want to join,” Joko said. The president said he is not afraid to introduce unpopular policies, such as the fuel subsidy cuts, to create a better future. “Being president is not about popularity,” he said.
The meeting was attended by 500 Indonesian citizens.