Indonesia-Japan partnership expected to grow

January 18, 2017, The Jakarta Post

Japan’s deputy foreign affairs minister, Nobuo Kishi, has said Japan and Indonesia could benefit from strengthening ties, as the two countries share many similarities.

“Japan and Indonesia are archipelagic states that are connected through the sea. Hence, we have big potential to strengthen collaboration in the future,” Kishi said on Tuesday after meeting with Coordinating Maritime Affairs Minister Luhut Pandjaitan in Jakarta.

Japan is currently the second-largest foreign investor in Indonesia, with investment reaching US$5.4 billion in 2016, far above the $2.87 billion recorded in the previous year.

The Indonesian government has intended to persuade Japan to give further support for various strategic projects, such as Jakarta’s MRT system, the Patimban deep-sea port in West Java, the semi high-speed railway connecting Jakarta and Surabaya in East Java and the development of the gas-rich Masela block in the Arafura Sea.

“Among several topics discussed with the minister [Luhut], there were ones related to Patimban Port and the semi high-speed railway. The discussion was quite constructive,” Kishi said.

Total investment value for the Patimban project and semi high-speed railway are estimated at around Rp 40 trillion ($3 billion) and Rp 102 trillion, respectively.

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