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Jakarta Post

Indonesia, India to strengthen relations in politics, defense

  • Dian Septiari

    The Jakarta Post

Jakarta   /   Tue, May 29, 2018   /   10:44 am
Indonesia, India to strengthen relations in politics, defense Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi. (AFP/Patricia de Melo Moreira)

Indonesia will strengthen relations with India during Prime Minister Narendra Modi's visit on Tuesday, focusing not only on economic cooperation but also politics and defense, Foreign Minister Retno Marsudi said on Monday.

She said the two countries had increased trade over the years, with trade volume reaching US$18.87 billion last year, while in terms of investment, India was the 16th largest investor in Indonesia, a big leap from 24th position the year before. As for tourism, around 500,000 Indians visited Indonesia last year, a 28 percent increase from a year prior. 

Read also: Indo-Pacific concept on agenda during Modi's Jakarta visit

“From an economic perspective, the indicators are very clear, while from political indicators, we have also maintained good relations since the birth of the country,” she said. 

She said the two countries would discuss several agreements in the meeting, including an update to a defense agreement, “but the finalizing will be continued up to the last minutes.”

Retno added that among interesting developments was that the two countries would conduct joint production in the strategic industry. “One of the finalized prototypes is water cannon, which will be produced by PT Pindad and Tata Motors,” she said, adding that the product would be exhibited during Modi’s visit.

Modi is scheduled to arrive in Jakarta on Tuesday evening and meet with President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo at the Merdeka Palace on Wednesday. The two leaders also plan to visit the National Monument and the Grand Istiqlal Mosque.