The Jakarta Post
Foreign Minister Retno LP Marsudi traveled to Senegal to meet with President Macky Sall in the capital Dakar on Monday to follow up on cooperation initiatives in infrastructure, the mining sector, strategic industry and the economy.
During her visit, Retno witnessed the beginning of a 250 million euro (US$276.9 million) project led by state-owned construction company PT Wijaya Karya to build the La Tour de Goree, a multipurpose building set up to be an icon of Dakar ahead of the planned 2022 Youth Olympics.
The agreement, consummated on Monday by representatives of PT WIKA and the Senegalese authority for phase 1 of the construction, was secured at the Indonesia-Africa Infrastructure Dialogue in August, the ministry said in a statement.
“President Sall had expressed his appreciation for the deal to construct the La Tour de Goree, as well as for the sale of Indonesian-made CN-235 aircraft to Senegal,” the statement read.
On the sidelines of the meeting in Senegal, a number of Indonesian state-owned enterprises, including PT WIKA, PT Dirgantara Indonesia, PT Timah and Indonesia Eximbank, accompanied the minister and held a series of meetings to explore further cooperation in each of their respective sectors.
Senegal had offered a number of projects for further collaboration, which includes the construction of bridges, the renovation of military airports, purchases of aircraft and possible cooperation in the mining industry, particularly in the treatment of phosphates.
The foreign minister was also in Dakar to take up an invitation to speak at an international conference on sustainable development hosted by the Senegalese government in collaboration with the International Monetary Fund (IMF). She spoke about Indonesia’s success stories in development and investment cooperation with countries in Africa, the ministry said.
On the sidelines of the conference, Retno took the opportunity to speak with Burkina Faso President Roch Marc Christian Kaboré, Malian Prime Minister Boubou Cisse and Deputy Secretary-General of the United Nations Amina Mohammed.
The visit was Retno’s first to Africa since President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo began his second term in October. The minister visited a number of African partner nations, such as South Africa, the Ivory Coast, Mozambique and Nigeria, in the previous term as part of a wider trade and investment push into so-called nontraditional markets. (tjs)