24
July

The Government of Indonesia and Malaysia agree to increase cooperation regarding negative campaigns against palm oil products in the European Union. The deal was reached during a bilateral meeting between Foreign Minister Retno Marsudi and Foreign Minister of Malaysia Saifuddin Abdullah in Jakarta on Monday July 23.

"We agreed to increase cooperation to counter the negative campaign against palm products in the European Union," said the foreign minister.

In the meantime, Malaysian Foreign Minister Saifuddin Abdullah said Indonesia and Malaysia as the two largest palm oil producer countries in the world should cooperate in maintaining the palm oil market in Europe.

"Both countries are the largest producers of palm oil products in the world, so we have to be compact. We agree that both countries should intensify discussions and cooperation because this issue is so big," Saifuddin said.

Furthermore, the two Ministers also agreed to play their respective roles in order to issue a negative campaign against palm products in the European Union region to be managed in a structured manner.

"We need to work more closely with this palm oil issue," said the Malaysian Foreign Ministry.

On June 14, 2018, a trio meeting between the European Commission, the European Parliament and the European Union Council produced several points on palm oil products. However, there is no special or explicit reference to palm oil in the deal. The result of the trialogous meeting is also not a ban or restriction of palm oil or biofuel imports.

Furthermore, the relevant provisions of the Renewable Energy Directive (RED) II are intended only to regulate the extent to which certain biofuel can be calculated by EU member states to achieve their sustainable energy targets.

However, the approved RED II text stipulates that the contributions of certain categories of bio-fuels, particularly those that have a high risk of indirect land-use change (ILUC) and from the expansion of food or raw materials, the production area of which is significantly the land with high carbon stocks, will be limited at the consumption level of 2019.

The Indonesian government considers that the draft EU trio results would use ILUC as a criterion, reflecting a more European view of the unilateral than internationally accepted views. (ANTARA)

21
July

Connectivity between Indonesia and Brunei Darussalam will be growing because one of the Indonesian private airlines in the near future will soon fly from Balikpapan, East Kalimantan to Bandar Seri Begawan, the capital of Brunei Darussalam. The realization of the flight route is a concrete form of the 4th Joint Commission Meeting for Bilateral Cooperation (JCBC) Indonesia-Brunei Darussalam which for the first time involves entrepreneurs from both countries. This was conveyed by the Indonesian Minister of Foreign Affairs Retno Marsudi in a press statement with Second Minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade of Brunei Darussalam Erywan Yusof, at Pancasila Building, Indonesian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Jakarta, Friday July 20th, 2018.

“For economic cooperation, for the first time in JCBC there is a business meeting conducted on the sidelines of this JCBC meeting. In that business meeting one MoU was signed between Sriwijaya Air and Syarikat Syarikat Kejuruteraan Bumiputera Belait Sdn Bhd for flight from Bandar Seri Begawan to Balikpapan.  We also agreed to improve the business to business relationship because it is a very important thing to improve the economic cooperation of both parties,” Retno Marsudi said.

Indonesian Ambassador to Brunei Darussalam Sujatmiko, through a press release on Thursday, July 19, 2018 said the business meeting that was part of the 4th JCBC was held in one hotel in Jakarta one day before the second bilateral Foreign Minister meeting. The business meeting was followed by nine companies from Brunei Darussalam and 15 Indonesian companies engaged in information technology, consulting, property, education, food, animal husbandry, tourism, and oil and gas. Through these business meetings, each party from both countries provides exposure on business opportunities, regulation, and business potential, by the Investment Coordinating Board (BKPM) and the Foreign Ministry and Trade of Brunei Darussalam. Some positive notes from the business meeting include interest in opening joint ventures and joint ventures by entrepreneurs from both countries. To follow up on this, entrepreneurs from both countries have agreed to hold the next business meeting in Brunei Darussalam in the near future. (VOI/Rezha/DP)

20
July

Indonesian Minister of Foreign Affairs Retno Marsudi held a bilateral meeting with Papua New Guinea Minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade, Rimbink Pato on Thursday, July 19th, 2018 at Pancasila Building, Ministry of Foreign Affairs of RI, Jakarta. On the occasion, the Minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade Rimbink Pato stated that any statement in the name of Papua New Guinea which contains support for Papuan independence is not from the Papua New Guinea government. He asserted that the Province of West Papua and Papua is the sovereign territory of the Unitary State of the Republic of Indonesia.

“And of course on the issue of the respect for the sovereignty and integrity of both Indonesia and Papua New Guinea. Papua New Guinea is the present policy, and previous policy, and future policy is that the province of Papua and West Papua remind that there are part of the Republic of Indonesia. So, any intepretation, any statement, whatever that anyone has raid. Anyway changes PNG policy and the policy of the future. There is, we will walk with Indonesia to address issue of the development along the border in close cooperation and consultation under the various agreement,” Rimbink Pato said.

Papua New Guinea is one of the Pacific countries that affirmed West Papua as the territory of Indonesian sovereignty. As is known, many countries in the Pacific region expressed support for separatist groups that support the independence of West Papua. However, recently a spokesman for the Indonesian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Arrmanatha Nasir stated that many neighboring countries have appreciated the progress of the Government of Indonesia under the leadership of President Joko Widodo in addressing human rights issues and development inequality in Papua. (VOI/Rezha/AHM)

22
July

Indonesian Minister of Foreign Affairs Retno Marsudi held a bilateral meeting with Minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade II of Brunei Darussalam, Erywan Yusof at Pancasila Building, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Jakarta, Friday, July 20th, 2018. The meeting was held in the 4th Joint Committe Bilateral Cooperation for Bilateral Cooperation (JCBC) corridor. Foreign Minister Retno Marsudi discussed several regional issues in Southeast Asia, including the preparation of ASEAN Foreign Ministers Meeting / Post Ministerial Conferences (AMM / PMC) which will be held in Singapore in the near future. At the meeting the two Foreign Ministers also mambahas Indonesia Indo Pacific concept which in April became one of the discussion at the ASEAN Summit.

“For regional and international issues, we talked about the preparation of AMM / PMC meeting which will be held in Singapore at the end of this month and early next month. Indonesia highly appreciates Brunei Darussalam's support for the Indonesian paper concept on Indo Pacific which puts great emphasis on ASEAN centrality,” Retno Marsudi said.

The concept of Indo-Pacific is a geopolitical cooperation that connects between two oceans namely the Indian and Pacific Oceans where the point is in Indonesia. This makes Indonesia and ASEAN as a region region become the main players in this geopolitical cooperation. On the same occasion, Foreign Minister Retno Marsudi also again conveyed his appreciation to Brunei Darussalam which has provided support to Indonesia to step forward as a non-permanent member of the United Nations Security Council for 2019-2020 period representing the Asia and Pacific region. In addition, Foreign Minister Retno Marsudi also invited Sultan of Brunei Darussalam, Sultan Hassanal Bolkiah to attend the ASEAN Leaders Gathering Meeting which will be held in Bali, in October. (VOI / Rezha/RHM)