President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo’s vision to make Indonesia the world’s maritime axis has prompted Germany, the world’s third-largest arms exporter, to strengthen the two countries’ bilateral partnership with maritime defense.
German Ambassador to Indonesia Georg Witschel said that German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier would be visiting Indonesia on Nov. 2-3 to conduct bilateral talks with Indonesian Foreign Minister Retno Marsudi.
“Germany has a lot to offer, indeed. Our shipyards, supply industries, ocean carriers and logistic companies are strong players, standing ready to get more actively involved in Indonesia,” he told reporters at the embassy on Thursday. He said that Steinmeier would be accompanied not only by officials from his ministry, but also academics and 15 senior business representatives, from steel producer and automotive industry company.
During his visit, Steinmeier also plans to visit Tanjung Priok and Sunda Kelapa ports in North Jakarta. “By visiting Sunda Kelapa Port, he [Steinmeier] wants to gain first-hand knowledge of the maritime situation and archipelagic nature of Indonesia,” Witschel said.
Besides the maritime vision of the country’s new administration, Witschel emphasized the imminent implementation of the ASEAN Economic Community (AEC) next year, saying it would offer further opportunities for investment in Indonesia. “I am sure that the number of German companies engaged in Indonesia will increase significantly in the years to come,” said Germany’s former envoy to Ottawa, Canada.
Witschel said that next year, the German and Indonesian governments would continue their negotiations, as the German government had committed to pouring 570 million into development in Indonesia in three prioritized areas, namely energy and climate change; sustainable economic development and good governance and global networks.