Update News March 07, 2017

In The News

President Jokowi welcomes IORA state leaders at gala dinner
Antara News 07/03/2017

President Joko Widodo welcomed a number state leaders attending the Indian Ocean Rim Association (IORA) Summit 2017 at a gala dinner, which was held at the Jakarta Convention Center here on Monday.

"Ladies and gentlemen, this Indian Ocean Rim has a great history with cultural diversity. Indonesia is the largest country of maritime economic zone in the eastern part with about 17 thousand islands," the president said in his welcoming address during the dinner event.

On the occasion, Jokowi wore a black suit, and accompanied by the First Lady Iriana Joko Widodo, who wore a long red blouse. During the event, the head of state invited the audience to enjoy the dance and music that was served at banquets.

The president expressed a hope that the heads of state and delegates kindly join the summit and provide productive results in the maritime field.
"Please dont forget to enjoy world-class shopping in Jakarta, its culinary, as well as golf courses and their hospitality. I hope you will visit Indonesia more often," Jokowi pointed out.

Earlier, the IORA ministerial meeting had agreed several outcomes, to be brought to the meeting of heads of state and government at the IORA summit to be held on Tuesday.

The IORAs ministers meeting was co-chaired by a troika consisting of three foreign affairs ministers of Indonesia, South Africa, and Australia."Today, we had a very productive meeting with a number of outcomes," Indonesian Minister of Foreign Affairs Retno Marsudi, the Chair of the ministers meeting, said here on Monday.

The first outcome adopted by the IORAs Council of Ministers Meeting was an agreement to implement modalities for the first IORA Leaders Summit to be held tomorrow.

Secondly, the ministers also endorsed a strategic and visionary IORA Document, called the Jakarta Concord, which will be submitted to the leaders of IORA member states at the summit for their agreement."The Jakarta Concord provides a clear direction that will enhance and strengthen the IORA cooperation," Marsudi stated.

The Jakarta Concord will strengthen the six IORA priorities, namely maritime safety and security, trade and investment facilitation, fisheries management, disaster risk management, academic science and technology, and tourism and cultural exchange. It also endorses three new important issues for future cooperation of IORA members.

The three new important issues include blue economy, womens empowerment, and the promotion of democracy.
The third outcome that the minister adopted was the IORA Action Plant, the first action plan that IORA has produced."The Action Plan is a living document that provides concrete steps and measures," Marsudi noted.

Currently, the IORA is a dynamic organization of 21 member states including Australia, Bangladesh, Comoros, India, Indonesia, Iran, Kenya, Madagascar, Malaysia, Mauritius, Mozambique, Oman, the United Arab Emirates, Seychelles, Singapore, Somalia, South Africa, Sri Lanka, Tanzania, Thailand, and Yemen.

In addition, IORA has seven dialogue partners including the US, the UK, Japan, Germany, Egypt, France, and the Peoples Republic of China.IORA is celebrating its 20th anniversary in March 2017. Indonesia, as the current chair of the IORA, will host the first ever IORA Leaders Summit.

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IORA Member States Open to Industrial Cooperation with Indonesia
Tempo, 07/03/2017

Indonesia has a great opportunity to establish industrial cooperation with the Indian Ocean Rim Association (IORA) member states which include cooperation in shipping, sea products, auto components, petrochemical, and coal gasification as well as agro-processing industry.
“We are stepping up industrial investments due to their labor-intensive nature with an orientation on exports and import substitution.

Improved market access to IORA member states, most of which are non-traditional markets, may be done through the framework of a bilateral supply chain,” Industry Minister Airlangga Hartarto said after attending the IORA Business Summit in Jakarta on Monday, March 6, 2017.

The Industry Minister in a written statement said that Indonesia also needs to initiate business matching with the IORA member states and to optimize the roles of the Indonesian Embassies in promoting local industries and market potential.

“Improved cooperation such as training and capacity building of small and medium-scale industries have already been done with Mozambique and Seychelles,” he noted.

In terms of economic interests, Airlangga said that the countries of the Indian Ocean have huge economic potential, boasting a large market with a population of 2.7 billion, with around 70 percent of world trade passes through the region, they also have 55 percent of global oil reserves and 40 percent of global gas reserves.

Moreover, the countries produce roughly 1/3 of global tuna production and hold valuable mineral reserve“Considering such potential, Indonesia needs to, among others, establish infrastructure and maritime connectivity, including the development of shipping and maritime industry,” he said.

In line with the idea of a global maritime axis, according to Airlangga, Indonesia is striving to exert its influence on the economy and political sphere in the Indian and the Pacific Oceans.

IORA is the biggest cooperation forum in the Indian Ocean established in 1997. IORA has 21 member states, namely Australia, South Africa, Bangladesh, Comoros, India, Indonesia, Iran, Kenya, Madagascar, Malaysia, Mauritius, Mozambique, Oman, Seychelles, Singapore, Somalia, Sri Lanka, Thailand, United Arab Emirates, and Yemen.

The IORA’s seven dialogue partners are the United States, the United Kingdom, Japan, Germany, Egypt, China, and France.

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Julie Bishop, Jusuf Kalla Discuss Economic Cooperation
Tempo, 07/03/2017

Australian Foreign Minister Julie Bishop has met with Indonesian Vice President Jusuf Kalla to discuss trade and investment potential after President Joko Widodo’s visit to Australia last week.

Bishop said that negotiation to step up investment and trade volume which is further elaborated in the Indonesian Australia Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement (IA-CEPA) is expected to complete by the end of the year.

At present, Jusuf Kalla said that Australia had opened a new consular office in Surabaya following the unveiling of its consular office in Makassar, which is mainly tasked with attracting more trade deals and investment.

On the occasion, Bishop said that she and VP Kalla discussed tourism potential that is expected to benefit both countries.Bishop added that over one million Australian visited Indonesia annually and she expects to see an increase in Indonesian tourist arrivals in the Australia.

Foreign Minister Julie Bishop is in Indonesia to join the Indian Ocean Rim Association (IORA) Summit held on March 6-7 in Jakarta. Bishop was the former IORA chairperson for 2013-2015.

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FM Retno Seeks to Strengthen Trade, Maritime Relations at IORA Summit
Jakarta Globe, 07/03/2017

Foreign Minister Retno Marsudi met with her counterparts from the United Arab Emirates, Singapore, the Comoros, Kenya, Mauritius and Myanmar to discuss strengthening maritime and trade relations in the region during the meeting of the Indian Ocean Rim Association Council of Ministers in Jakarta on Monday (06/03).

Indonesia and Kenya, the country's sixth-largest trading partner in sub-Saharan Africa, plan to devise new ways of promoting mutual trade in strategic industries, according to a press release from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

Kenya also plans to establish an embassy in Jakarta in the coming months to replace its current honorary consulate in the capital.

Total trade between the two countries amounted to $210 million last year.
Maritime Partnerships

IORA comprises 21 coastal states bordering on the Indian Ocean and its provides an annual forum to discuss bilateral relations between member states, with a special focus on maritime relations.

During her meeting with Mauritian Foreign Minister Seetanah Lutchmeenaraidoo, Retno invited the country to strengthen cooperation in combating illegal, unreported and unregulated fishing.

Indonesia has seen an increase in recent years in trade and foreign direct investments from the Comoros and Mauritius. In 2016, trade between Indonesia and the Comoros increased 20 percent, whereas total investments from Mauritius increased twelvefold.
Retno discussed further opportunities during the meeting to strengthen member states' partnerships in maritime industries.

Future of IORA
Retno also encouraged United Arab Emirates Foreign Minister Maitha Salam Al Shamsi to increase his government's role in IORA, citing vast potential for mutually beneficial trade and security relations between the Gulf nation and member states.

The United Arab Emirates will chair IORA in 2018, after Indonesia hands its chairmanship to South Africa in 2017.The two countries also discussed increasing investment by the United Arab Emirates in Indonesia as the Southeast Asian nation looks to diversify its energy sector.

IORA is expected to produce four documents at the Leaders' Summit on Tuesday, which will outline future programs aimed at creating a peaceful, stable and prosperous Indian Ocean region. This year commemorates the association's 20th anniversary.

At least 16 presidents, vice presidents and prime ministers will attend the IORA Leaders' Summit on Tuesday.
The association's member states include South Africa, Australia, Bangladesh, the Comoros, India, Indonesia, Iran, Kenya, Madagascar, Malaysia, Mauritius, Mozambique, Oman, United Arab Emirates, Seychelles, Singapore, Somalia, Sri Lanka, Tanzania, Thailand and Yemen.

The Indian Ocean Tourism Organization and the Indian Ocean Research Group, two monitoring organizations, are also participating in the summit.

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Two airports in Indonesia receive ACI awards
Antara News, 07/03/2017

Ngurah Rai International Airport in Bali and Sultan Hasanuddin International Airport in South Sulawesi have received prestigious awards from the Airport Council International (ACI).

"Ngurah Rai won the title of The Worlds Third-Best Airport 2016 among airports serving 15-25 million passengers per year and Sultan Hasanuddin was adjudged The Most Improved Airport in the Asia-Pacific 2016," secretary of the airport management company PT Angkasa Pura-I Israwadi remarked in a press statement received by ANTARA here on Monday.

The assessment was based on the results of the Airport Service Quality (ASQ) survey, released on March 6, 2017. The ASQ is the only global benchmark program that measures the degree of satisfaction of passengers at airports, conducted by ACI, an organization of the worlds leading airports, based in Montreal, Canada.

Since its creation in 2006, the ASQ Survey has become the worlds leading airport passenger satisfaction benchmark, with over 320 airports participating across 80 countries.

Its scientific methodology, strict quality control procedures, and commitment to impartiality have won industry recognition and established the ASQ Survey as the global standard for measuring passenger satisfaction.

ASQ is the only global airport survey based on measuring passenger satisfaction taken while they are at the airport.Annually, some 600 thousand passengers are interviewed prior to boarding their flights and urged to rate their satisfaction with the airports services.(*)

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Government set to finish electrification of Papua in 2018
Antara News, 07/03/2017

Energy and Mineral Resources Minister Ignasius Jonan said the government is set to finish electrification program in Papua and West Papua in 2018 using solar power plants to dismiss darkness at night in the villages in the countrys easternmost provinces.

"This is the target of the government . This year or next year at the latest , there would be electric lamps. Electric lamps are more important. Next we would build electric networks," the minister said in a media discussion here on Sunday.

The discussion was attended by Public Works and Housing Minister Basuki Hadimuliono, Communications and Informatics Minister Rudiantara and Communications Minister Budi Karya.
Jonan said most of 2,500 villages still without electricity in the country are in the two regions.

Around 136,000-140,000 households of 260,000 households still engulfed by darkness every night in the country are in Papua and West Papua, he said.
He said the program is that every household not yet having electrification would be provided with a solar panel with four lamps and battery chargers for cellular phones.

The lamps consists of three categories - ones that could last for 6 hours, 12 hours and 60 hours.
Jonan said in Papua, the government would build 9 units of power plant with renewable energy with a capacity of 365 Megawatts until 2019.
The minister also said his office would back up the policy to create a single price of premium gasoline all over the country including Papua and West Papua.

He said currently there is no more gasoline sold at Rp60,000 per liter, adding the highest price is Rp12,000 per liter as against the normal price of Rp6,500 per liter in other parts of the nation.

Transport cost to the interior areas of Papua pushed up the price of goods not yet produced in that region.Cement price could be as high as more than Rp1,500 a sack in interior area of Papua as against a normal price of Rp50,000 in other regions of the country.

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Government commits to building energy infrastructure in Papua
Antara News 07/03/2017

The Indonesian government has committed to building energy infrastructure in the provinces of Papua and West Papua to ensure equitable development across Indonesias regions.

Energy and Mineral Resources Minister Ignasius Jonan stated in a press release received by ANTARA here on Monday that infrastructure development covered the oil and gas, electricity, and renewable energy sectors.

"The governments policy and program of energy infrastructure focuses on equitable development in the eastern region of Indonesia, so that goods can be purchased at affordable prices (due to reduction in the distribution chain)," he explained.

According to Jonan, the governments program of a one-price policy in the oil and gas sector will reach 33 districts in the provinces of Papua and West Papua through the development of oil and diesel fuel agents by 2019.

"Currently, the one-price policy program has been implemented in seven districts, so that the fuel price in the provinces of Papua and West Papua will be the same as that in Java Island," he remarked.

In addition to the one-price policy, the government has planned to build gas networks to connect 11,500 households by 2018 in two locations.For the electricity sector, Jonan said the government has planned to build a 514-megawatt power plant, which is expected to be completed by 2019.

"In addition, the rural electrification program is being continually implemented to reach 186 thousand customers by 2019," he stated.
The government will also distribute packages of energy-saving lamps in the regions of Papua and West Papua where each household will receive four lamp packages."The packages of energy-saving lamps are a breakthrough program to ensure equitable access to electricity," he remarked.

To develop renewable energy during the 2012-2017 period, the government has built 54 renewable energy plants and installed 390 public street lights that use solar energy, among others.

"There are solar, hydro, and micro hydropower plants, among others. We have already recorded all the recipients of electricity supply by checking their names and addresses in Papua," he noted.

He also said his side had emphasized that 60-70 percent of the budget should be utilized to fund programs that can directly benefit the people in a bid to improve their welfare.(*)

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President Jokowi calls for better transportation between Sumatra and Java
Antara News, 07/03/2017

President Joko Widodo (Jokowi), during a closed-door meeting on Monday, emphasized the need for improving transportation services between the islands of Sumatra and Java by operating better ferries.

"We are concerned about the operation of the toll road from Lampung Province to Palembang, which leads to vehicle queues in Merak-Bakauheni crossing lane," the Lampung Governor M Ridho Ficardo stated here on Monday.

Jokowi and Vice President M. Jusuf Kalla (Jokowi), along with Ricardo and other officials, held a meeting in the Presidents Office to discuss the National Strategic Project and Prioritized Program.

Ficardo stressed that the transportation authority should deploy several ferries of better quality to improve cargo transportation between Merak and Bakauheni ports that connect Sumatra and Java islands.

According to Ficardo, the authority should operate ferry trips every hour to transport cargo and passengers.He reiterated that the authority can increase the ticket price to provide better services and deploy faster ferries.

"The improved toll road should be offset by better crossing access. It is fine to increase the price to provide better services," Ficardo pointed out.
The meeting also discussed the development of industrial areas in Tanggamus District that builds maritime industry, Mesuji District, and Waypisan District.
The governor added that the industrial area in Mesuji District could be developed, because the region has a mine of low calorie coals that can supply fuel for power plants.

The Trans Sumatera toll road has entered the second phase of construction with the development of toll road of 250 kilometers. The government is targeting its completion in 2018.

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Indonesia to invite IORA members to invest in tourism
The Jakarta Post, 07/03/2017

The Tourism Ministry will offer investment proposals for 10 new tourist destination to countries participating in the Indian Ocean Rim Association (IORA) conference.
The proposals will be offered to businesspeople from IORA’s 21 members and seven dialog partner countries, Tourism Minister Arief Yahya said on Monday.

Apart from new destinations, the government has made a number of other efforts including opening direct flights to potential tourist destinations.
(Read also: 12,000 personnel to secure IORA summit)
"Air connectivity is important to support tourism because 75 percent of tourist visits to Indonesia use air transportation," he said during the IORA business summit.

The government has also intensified infrastructure development in the new destinations to provide visitors with more choices aside from Bali, which is already well known.

The 10 destinations are Lake Toba in North Sumatra, Tanjung Kelayang in Bangka Belitung, Tanjung Lesung in Banten, Thousand Islands in Jakarta, Borobudur temple in Central Java, Bromo Tengger Semeru in East Java, Mandalika in West Nusa Tenggara, Labuan Bajo in East Nusa Tenggara, Wakatobi in Southeast Sulawesi and Morotai in Maluku. Later, the government intends to add Tana Toraja as an 11th destination.

IORA members comprise South Africa, Australia, Bangladesh, Comoro, India, Indonesia, Iran, Kenya, Madagascar, Malaysia, Mauritius, Mozambique, Oman, the United Arab Emirates, the Seychelles, Singapore, Somalia, Sri Lanka, Tanzania, Thailand and Yemen.

The seven dialogue partners are China, France, Japan, the United States, Egypt, Germany and the United Kingdom. (bbn)

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