Posted by: mel | January 23, 2010

Chinese State Councilor pays courtesy call on SBY

Jakarta Post | Jakarta | Erwida Maulia  | National | 23 January 2010

Chinese State Councilor Dai Bingguo paid a courtesy call Friday on Indonesian President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono, during which they discussed various issues regarding the bilateral relationship between China and Indonesia.

Presidential spokesman Dino Patti Djalal said Dai regularly met with his Indonesian counterpart, this time with Coordinating Political, Legal and Security Affairs Minister Djoko Suyanto.

Dino said such meetings had been conducted since Yudhoyono still served as chief political minister in the early 2000s.

“This is a mechanism of consultation at the coordinating political, legal and security affairs minister level, which has been taking place annually,” Dino told a press conference after Dai’s meeting with Yu-dhoyono at the Presidential Office.

Yudhoyono, Dino said, expressed his satisfaction with the strategic partnership between Indonesia and China that was signed in April 2005.

“The President said the bilateral consultation mechanism should be improved and done more frequently, not only formally but also informally,” he said.

“The President also emphasized that cooperation between Indonesia and China would also be applied at regional and global forums, such as at APEC, ASEAN-China, and G20 forums.”

Meanwhile, Dai, according to Dino, recognized the importance of Indonesia to China as a “pillar” country in ASEAN and Asia.

“He praised Indonesia’s success in maintaining unity, improving prosperity and preserving social cohesion, as well as its active roles in regional and international forums.”

Dino said the much talked-about ASEAN Free Trade (AFTA) issue was not specifically discussed by Dai and Yudhoyono, saying the two had only agreed on the importance of further strengthening economic cooperation between the two countries, including their roles in the G20 economic forum.

Defense and security issues, meanwhile, were discussed at greater length during Dai’s meeting with Djoko earlier in the day.

He said Indonesia and China had been developing partnerships in the field, with military cooperation having become a “crucial” part of their strategic partnership in the past few years.

Dino stopped short, however, of mentioning details of the meeting between Dai and Djoko.

Dino said Yudhoyono planned to visit Shanghai in the middle of the year, and had expressed hope that Chinese Prime Minister Wen Jiabao could also visit Indonesia later this year.

Earlier Thursday, Dai and Djoko witnessed the signing of an action plan of strategic partnership for political, legal and security sectors to follow up on the 2005 strategic partnership.

The action plan was signed by director general for Asia, Pacific and African affairs at the Indonesian Foreign Ministry, Hamzah Thayeb, and Chinese Ambassador to Indonesia, Zhang Qiyue.

Both countries agreed on several crucial issues on cooperation in the political, legal, security, social, cultural, economic, and trade sectors, Antara news agency reported.

“The action plan was formulated in 2006 and is now being implemented by both countries in the coming years as part of the strategic partnership,” Djoko said.

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