The Jakarta Post
Indonesia and Germany have agreed to cooperate in vocational education and plan to hold a technical follow-up meeting in May.
In a joint press conference with German Chancellor Angela Merkel at the Bundeskanzleramt on Monday afternoon, President Joko "Jokowi" Widodo said his working visit to Germany focused on cooperation on vocational education between the two countries.
"Indonesia's vocational education needs help from Germany, especially in the industrial sector such as the electrical industry, including on power plants, the textile industry, maritime industries and others," Jokowi said according to a statement by his communication team made available to thejakartapost.com on Tuesday.
The President added that Germany was one of Indonesia's most important partners in Europe, namely its first trading partner and the seventh-largest investor.
In the meeting, President Jokowi and Chancellor Merkel agreed to strengthen economic cooperation under the framework of the Indonesian-European Union Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement (IE-CEPA). Merkel said Germany fully supported the completion of IE-CEPA as soon as possible.
She also proposed that the two countries set up a steering committee to follow up on the agreement. "The steering committee will report to what extent the Jakarta Declaration has been implemented and how we will continue our bilateral relations," she said.
The two leaders also exchanged thoughts on several world issues, including counterterrorism efforts. President Jokowi said as the country with the largest Muslim population in the world and the third-largest democracy in the world, Indonesia had experience it could share with Germany.
"There are two important approaches that we have carried out [in counterterrorism], namely the use of hard power through law enforcement and soft power through religious and cultural approaches. If the combination of the two is achieved, I believe terrorism could combatted in a better and more comprehensive way," he said.
Meanwhile, Merkel said Germany saw Indonesia as playing a very important role in spreading the values of tolerance, considering that Indonesia was a majority Muslim country while at the same time being a democratic country. (ebf)
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