Your Excellency President Joko Widodo,
Friends from the Media,
At the outset, I wish to express our sincere condolences on the loss of life due to the recent earthquake in Aceh .
I am honoured to welcome President Joko Widodo , on his First State Visit to India. I had first met President Widodo in November 2014 at , and had discussed at length how our partnership could be of benefit to us and the region.
You are the Leader of a great nation. As the world’s most populous Muslim nation Indonesia stands for democracy, diversity, pluralism, and social harmony. These are also our values. Our nations and societies have nurtured strong bonds of commerce and culture throughout our history. We live in a geography that is at the centre of rapid political, economic and strategic changes currently underway in the world. Your visit allows us to impart vigour and momentum to our Strategic Partnership. And, shape our convergences to act as a force of Peace, prosperity and stability in the Indo-Pacific region.
Indonesia is one of India’s most valued partners in our Act East Policy. It is the largest Economy in South East Asia. And, India is one of the fastest growing large economies in the world. As two large democracies and major emerging economies, we have Shared economic and strategic interests. We also face common concerns and challenges. My extensive conversation with President today focused on the full range of our cooperation. We agreed to prioritize defence and security cooperation. As two important maritime nations that are also neighbours, we agreed to cooperate to ensure the safety and security of the sea lanes, in disaster response and environmental protection. The Joint Statement on Maritime Cooperation outlines the agenda of our engagement in this field. Our partnership will also extend to combating terrorism, organized crime, drugs and Human Trafficking.
President and I also agreed to build a strong economic and development partnership that strengthens the flow of ideas, trade, capital and people between our two countries. I agreed with President Widodo to encourage Indian companies to work closely with Indonesia in the fields of pharmaceuticals, IT & software, and skill development. As two Developing Countries we also decided to move on Infrastructure development two-way Investment flows leveraging our respective capabilities. In this regard, the CEOs’ Forum should take the lead in identifying new avenues of wider and deeper Industry to Industry engagement. We also agreed that early implementation of India-ASEAN Free Trade Agreement in Services & Investment, and finalization of the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership would be important steps in this regard. We also underscored the importance of deepening our two decades old valuable cooperation in the field of Space. To sustain the momentum of our partnership, President Widodo and I have directed for an early meeting of the existing Ministerial-level mechanisms to carry forward the bilateral cooperation agenda.
Ties of history and strong cultural links between our societies are our shared heritage. The President and I agreed on the importance of stimulating research on our historical linkages. And, We agreed to speed up establishment of Chairs of Indian and Indonesian Studies in each other’s Universities. We also agreed to expand our scholarship and training programmes. The importance of improving direct connectivity and people to people contacts is well-known. And, in this respect we welcome Garuda Indonesia’s decision to commence direct flights to Mumbai.
I thank once again for your visit. I share with you the strong intent to take our bilateral engagement to a new level. And, I am confident that our discussions and the agreements that we have signed today, will help shape an action agenda and add new direction and intensity to our Strategic engagement. Before I conclude, to all our friends in Indonesia, I would like to wish Thank you.
Thank you very much.