Remarks With Indonesian Foreign Minister Retno Marsudi

John Kerry
Secretary of State
Ben Franklin Room
Washington, DC
September 21, 2015

SECRETARY KERRY: Thank you very much. Good morning. It is my pleasure to welcome Foreign Minister Marsudi from Indonesia. Indonesia, as everybody knows, is the world’s third-largest democracy, and there are many critical issues that we share enormous concerns about. We’re working very closely on any number of economic relationships. Indonesia plays a critical role with respect to ASEAN, the South China Sea, our concerns about climate change, and other issues. And because of the importance of this relationship, I’m very pleased to announce that on October 26th, President Jokowi will come to Washington to meet with President Obama, where we can further develop the bilateral trade relationship as well as other things that we are working on together.

So we have a lot to talk about today. We’ve just met and we’ve begun the conversation, particularly to begin to lay the foundation of the visit of President Jokowi. Frankly, President Jokowi and President Obama share a lot of similar approaches to getting things done. They are both people who are doers, people who believe in bureaucratic reform, regulatory reform, moving the process, breaking down the barriers of bureaucracy, and so we look forward to a very productive day today leading up to the meeting between the two presidents. Thank you.

FOREIGN MINISTER MARSUDI: Well, thank you very much, Secretary Kerry. This year is the fifth anniversary of Indonesia and the USA having the comprehensive partnership. I am very fortunate that I was one of those who give birth to the comprehensive partnership in 2010. And this morning, we discussed with Secretary Kerry about how we elevate to make a bilateral relation even stronger in the next – future – in the future. So that’s why I’m looking forward to again discuss with Secretary Kerry how we can bring the bilateral relation in higher level. And in that context, we are very happy to prepare the visit of President Jokowi to – actually to Washington, D.C., on the 26th until 28th of October.

And this is the best time for Indonesia and the USA to sit together and discuss about the future relation between the two country. As Secretary Kerry mentioned that Indonesia plays a very significant role in the region, in the ASEAN, and as the biggest Muslim population country, we can contribute a lot to create a (inaudible) situation to bring peace and stability in the region and in the world. And USA and Indonesia is also a very important partner in trade and investment, and Indonesia waiting to discuss the economic side of the bilateral relation. Thank you very much.