Kedutaan Besar Republik Indonesia
Ottawa
Embassy of the Republic of Indonesia
Ambassade de la RÉpublique d'Indonésie

The 60th Anniversary Of Indonesia-Canada Diplomatic Relations: Indonesia and Canada Signed a Joint Declaration on Enhancing Bilateral Consultations

Minister for Foreign Affairs of Indonesia, Dr. R.M. Marty M. Natalegawa and Minister of Foreign Affairs of Canada, John Baird

The year 2012 is a special year for Indonesia and Canada, as their Diplomatic Relations Diamond Anniversary is coming on 9 October. Highlighting the momentum, the Minister for Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Indonesia, H.E. Dr. R.M. Marty M. Natalegawa visited Ottawa on 22-23 August 2012 to have a bilateral meeting with his Canadian counterpart, the Honourable John Baird on 23 August 2012, to discuss the progress of Indonesia-Canada cooperation in various fields and the way forward. Determined to elevate the cooperation, Minister Natalegawa and Minister Baird signed a “Joint Declaration by the Government of the Republic of Indonesia and the Government of Canada on Enhancing Bilateral Consultations” after the bilateral meeting. The Joint Declaration specifies that the Bilateral Consultative Forum of Indonesia and Canada, which currently meets at the Level of Senior Officials, will be convened at the level of Minister of Foreign Affairs on an annual basis or as appropriate. The Forum will enable both countries to measure the progress of their bilateral, regional and international cooperation as reference for future concrete cooperation.

The two Ministers discussed various regional and global issues, ways to strengthen ASEAN-Canada relations as Dialogue Partners, positive development in Myanmar and regional architecture. The two Ministers had an exchange of view on current global issues, especially the ones concerning Human Rights promotion, Good Governance and Democracy.

Apart from the bilateral meeting with Minister Baird, Minister Natalegawa delivered a presentation at a Speaking Engagement to academicians, think tank institutions, parliamentarians, government representatives and media. He said that Indonesia is pleased of the positive trend in Indonesia-Canada trade relations, which hit almost USD 2.9 billion in 2011, an increase of 61% compared to the previous year. Minister Natalegawa emphasized that there is plenty of room to increase the trade volume, which will be supported by product diversification. Indonesia is the largest investment destination in Southeast Asia. The fact that Indonesia’s economic growth is resilient amidst the world financial crisis should be considered as a strong foundation for stronger economic cooperation.

The signing of “Joint Declaration by the Government of the Republic of Indonesia and the Government of Canada on Enhancing Bilateral Consultations” by Ministers of Foreign Affairs of Indonesia and Canada, Ottawa, 23 August 2012

Minister Natalegawa emphasized that the two countries have had a long history of cooperation on regional and multilateral level. Both countries work closely within the framework of ASEAN, G-20, APEC, WTO and certainly UN. The world is dynamically changing and along with it various tensions rise. A stable and peaceful regional condition is a must to facilitate economic and political development. Such regional condition depends on the kind of regional architecture building that is shaping up. It is in the best interest of countries in the region to have a “dynamic equilibrium”, where all the countries in it can work together towards common security, stability and prosperity. This regional architecture must be nurtured. The South China Sea issue has been one of the main concerns in Asia and the exercise of the regional architecture will support all the involved parties to find the solution. Using the term ‘wedging peace’, Minister Natalegawa pointed out that to actively promoting peace is required. During the Speaking Engagement, at the same venue, a Photo Exhibition on various concrete cooperations during the 60 years relations of Indonesia and Canada were presented.

During the visit, Indonesia’s Foreign Minister met and had a discussion with Indonesian students in Canada from McGill University, Concordia University in Montreal; University of Toronto in Toronto; Manitoba University in Winnipeg; Carleton University in Ottawa and Seneca College in Toronto.  (Indonesian Embassy in Ottawa)