Annual Press Statement by
H.E. Dr. R. M. Marty M. Natalegawa
Minister for Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Indonesia
Jakarta, 4 January 2012
Excellency Prof. Dr. Mochtar Kusumaatmadja, Minister for Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Indonesia 1978 – 1988,
Excellency Dr. Alwi Shihab, Minister for Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Indonesia 1999 – 2001
Excellency Dr. N. Hassan Wirajuda, Minister for Foreign Affairs of the Republic of
Indonesia 2001 – 2009
Honorable Mr. Mahfudz Shiddiq, Chairman of Commission I of the House of Representative of the Republic of Indonesia,
Excellencies Ambassadors, Distinguished Members of the Press, Distinguished Guests, and Distinguished Colleagues from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs,
Assalammu’alaikum Warahmatullahi Wabarakatuh.
A very good morning to all of you.
Praise be to Allah Almighty, for by His Grace we are bestowed with good health so that we can continue to serve our beloved country.
On this auspicious occasion, on behalf of all officials and staff members of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Indonesia’s Representative Offices abroad, and on my own behalf, allow me to extend to all of you our best wishes for a Happy New Year 2012.
I am sure we are all determined that in the year 2012, we will work even harder so that we will be of greater service to our beloved nation.
As we bid farewell to the year 2011 and embark on a new year, allow me to extend our deep appreciation for all the support and attention that have been accorded to Indonesian diplomacy and foreign policy.
All the outcomes and accomplishments of Indonesian diplomacy and foreign policy in 2011 are undoubtedly due to the support and involvement of all stakeholders.
Throughout 2011, we witnessed how international conditions became more complex and full of uncertainties.
Multidimensional challenges, be they in the field of politics, security, or economy, became the defining character of the international situation in 2011.
Traditional and non-traditional challenges, interlinked and trans-boundary in nature.
We can even say that there is not a single problem, not a single challenge that we are facing at the present time that does not have a foreign policy dimension.
This is mainly due to two realities. First, the challenges have impacts that are complex and trans-boundary.
Second, no country can solve those challenges and situations on its own.
International cooperation therefore is a must.
At the same time, throughout 2011, we also witnessed swift and dynamic changes along with the uncertainties of the global condition.
The uncertainties of the global economic as well as political and security conditions.
In fact, the only certainty in 2011 was uncertainty itself.
This, as a general overview, was the global and regional environment in which Indonesian diplomacy was carried out through all of 2011.
Responding to such an environment, diplomacy did contribute.
Not only to overcoming the challenges but also to creating opportunities.
Responding to such environment, Indonesia consistently aimed at “managing change” and also at “promoting change”.
Indeed, these are two things that Indonesia endeavored throughout 2011.
And to these, not only was Indonesian diplomacy responsive, it was also anticipatory.
Indonesia always projected its leadership in addressing the myriad issues in the region and in the world at large.
The foreign policy undertaken in 2011 was always anchored to the national interest, and inspired by the principles of partnership and equality.
Indonesia always strived for solutions by bridging differences in order to arrive at mutual understanding and consensus in addressing common challenges.
Our foreign policy has been undertaken on the basis of a principled approach, one that is visionary and yet pragmatic and anticipatory in responding to global and regional developments.
All effort has been aimed at managing changes and their accompanying dynamics, while at the same time we have constantly promoted progress.
In line with the principle of an independent and active foreign policy, Indonesia has always taken an independent posture in foreign affairs, both in its perspective and actions.
All effort was undertaken to secure Indonesia’s national interests.
National interest as enshrined in the Preamble of the 1945 Constitution; to protect all the people and the country of Indonesia; to improve public welfare; to educate the people; and to help create a world order that is based on freedom, durable peace, and social justice.
As we commence our foreign policy in 2012, we anticipate that the intensity of global and regional challenges facing us is not diminishing but is instead increasing.
Uncertainty is also expected to persist at the global and regional levels.
And in the midst of the increasingly complex global and regional conditions, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs is committed and determined to continue, build upon, and enhance what we have accomplished in the previous year.
Indonesian diplomacy will continue to aim at managing change and promoting change in order to create an environment conducive to the achievement of common security, common stability and common prosperity.
Indonesia will persevere in waging peace and working for prosperity.
And indeed, developments in our foreign policy in 2011 attest to such a commitment. In
2012, this will continue to be the platform for Indonesian diplomacy and foreign policy.
Throughout 2011, Indonesia accorded particular attention to enhancing its relations with other countries.
We continue deepening and expanding our bilateral cooperation with countries on the basis of the principles of partnership, equality, and mutual benefit.
Throughout 2011, we intensified cooperation in priority areas with countries that have strategic or comprehensive partnerships with us. We also identified countries that have the potential to be Indonesia’s strategic partners.
In line with the guidance and directions from the President, in 2011 we identified 3-5 priority areas and targets for economic cooperation for each country with which we have strategic and comprehensive partnership.
These priority areas and targets will serve as benchmarks in measuring the effectiveness of our diplomatic machinery and foreign policy.
Additionally, throughout 2011, a wide range of efforts were undertaken to strengthen the mechanism for bilateral cooperation with other countries.
Such effort was undertaken by revitalizing our bilateral mechanisms with a number of countries, while fine-tuning bilateral mechanisms that were already functioning well.
Joint Commission Meetings at the Ministerial Level with the Philippines, Myanmar, and Lao PDR, which were dormant since 2007, were all revitalized.
We did the same with the Joint Commission Meeting at the Ministerial level with Brunei Darussalam, which was revitalized last year after its last meeting in 2003.
Also, in a systematic way, mechanisms that had been revitalized in past years were further strengthened in 2011, such as those with Timor-Leste, New Zealand, Malaysia, the United States and Japan.
Efforts to further intensify bilateral relations throughout 2011 were also reflected in the intensity of bilateral meetings, both at the Heads of State and Government level and at Foreign Minister level.
In order to build a legal framework for intensifying cooperation with other countries, throughout 2011, the Government of the Republic of Indonesia signed 146 international agreements, 131 of which are bilateral agreements.
Furthermore, Indonesia also ratified 26 agreements. Close to 90 percent of these agreements are bilateral agreements, and more than 60 percent are in the economic sector.
Looking ahead, all relevant stakeholders will certainly have to work hard to implement these various agreements.
Economic diplomacy is integral to Indonesia’s bilateral diplomacy. Efforts to enhance economic, trade and investment relations with other countries are one of the priorities of Indonesian diplomacy, in order to support national development and economic growth and to enhance the welfare of our people.
To ensure increased trade volume and enhanced quality of Indonesia’s trade with other countries, especially with strategic partners, trade targets have been established, which then will serve as benchmarks for measuring how economic diplomacy performs.
Indonesia’s Representative Offices abroad serve as the backbone of Indonesia’s economic diplomacy, to deepen and expand Indonesia’s traditional markets.
And at the same time, to further identify and develop non-traditional markets.
Such efforts have become even more important in the face of current uncertainties in the global economic situation.
A wide range of economic diplomacy efforts have been conducted by Indonesia’s Representative Offices in every corner of the world, from Azerbaijan to Zimbabwe; from New Zealand to China.
The holding of Indonesian trade exhibitions abroad, facilitating visits of foreign business people to Indonesia, and promoting the establishment of business forums to connect Indonesia’s business people with their foreign counterparts, are among the major initiatives of our economic diplomacy.
And we have all witnessed and harvested the outcomes. Throughout 2011, for instance,
Indonesia’s bilateral trade volumes with almost all countries increased compared to those in the year 2010.
For example, trade volumes with 13 countries with which we have strategic partnership have enjoyed sharp increases, above 50 percent on average.
In line with our commitment to establish diplomatic relations with all member States of the United Nations, throughout 2011, Indonesia officially opened diplomatic relations with nine countries, namely Mauritania, El Salvador, San Marino, Montenegro, the Dominican Republic, Niger, Sao Tome and Principe, Antigua and Barbuda, and Bhutan.
These nine countries were among the remaining 21 friendly countries with which Indonesia had not had official diplomatic relations. With the eventual official establishment of diplomatic relations with the rest of these countries, Indonesia will be enjoying diplomatic relations with practically all 193 member States of the United Nations.
At the same time, five countries opened new representative offices in Jakarta, namely the Embassies of Fiji, Colombia, Belarus and Paraguay in Jakarta, and the Consulate General of the People’s Republic of China in Medan.
In 2011, 16 countries opened their representative offices to ASEAN in Jakarta. As of the end of 2011, there were 61 countries that had designated their Permanent Representatives to ASEAN. In 2012, some countries are planning to open their representative offices in Jakarta, including Vanuatu and Georgia.
This will further strengthen the position of Indonesia, and particularly Jakarta as one of the diplomatic capitals of East Asia.
In the year 2012, Indonesia will continue to accord great attention to bilateral diplomacy.
We will continue to enhance cooperation with strategic partnership countries to optimize mutually beneficial opportunities, including to monitor the progress in implementation of designated priority areas.
We will continue strengthening existing bilateral mechanisms and making them more comprehensive with the involvement of the private sector and other stakeholders.
The designated targets of trade volume will serve as for each Representative Office to fulfill.
It is the obligation of Indonesian Representative Offices abroad to expand Indonesia’s export market in order to achieve the targeted export value for 2012: US$ 230 billion.
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs has also instructed all Indonesia’s Representative Offices to actively pursue foreign investments that will be beneficial to Indonesia’s economy in accordance with the Master Plan for the Acceleration and Expansion of Indonesian Economic Development (MP3EI).
Indonesia’s Representative Offices abroad must also contribute to the attainment of the target of bringing in 8 million foreign tourists to Indonesia in 2012.
All those benchmarks are clear measurements and will become targets for each Indonesian mission abroad.
To further improve Indonesia’s bilateral diplomacy, in line with the President’s instruction, in the early part of 2012, a coordinating meeting of all Indonesian Heads of Missions to assess systematic efforts in strengthening our bilateral relations with all countries will be convened in Jakarta.
Regional diplomacy is an important pillar of Indonesia’s diplomacy.
Bilateral diplomacy and regional diplomacy can complement and reinforce each other.
Both are closely intertwined.
In building regional cooperation, Indonesia’s diplomacy always emphasizes the development of a regional architecture that allows cooperation to address mutual security challenges, both traditional and non-traditional. Our common challenges or threats in the region are not a particular country, but such common issues as poverty alleviation, environment preservation, disaster management, and combating transnational crimes.
Indonesia has consistently pursued the creation of a “dynamic equilibrium” in the region, based on an approach that underscores the principles of attaining common stability, common security and common prosperity for all countries in the region.
This is undoubtedly aimed at establishing a peaceful, safe and stable region that allows countries in the region, including Indonesia, to carry out economic development and improve the welfare of the people.
Indonesia’s Chairmanship of ASEAN in 2011 provided us with an opportunity to contribute positively to the development of the evolving regional architecture.
As in the previous years when Indonesia chaired ASEAN, throughout 2011, Indonesia consistently exercised leadership, which was not limited to performing its duties as a Chair.
Being the Chair of ASEAN is a matter of annual rotation; but leadership in ASEAN entails generating positive contribution to the development of the ASEAN Community, a process that does not end with the conclusion of the Chairmanship period but continues to move forward.
This was what Indonesia demonstrated during its ASEAN Chairmanship in 2011.
Indonesia has certainly made a difference.
Indonesia strived to change the previous conditions and situations to make progress.
Since Indonesia was mandated to be ASEAN Chair in 2011, based on the theme of “ASEAN Community in a global community of nations”, Indonesia identified three priorities of its Chairmanship, which were subsequently adopted as ASEAN priorities in 2011; namely:
ensuring significant progress in the attainment of the ASEAN Community;
establishing a regional condition conducive to development;
initiating a post-2015 ASEAN vision; namely: a bigger role for ASEAN in addressing global challenges through having an ASEAN stand on various global issues.
Those three priorities became references for all ASEAN endeavors, especially by Indonesia as Chair of ASEAN.
During Indonesia’s Chairmanship, we witnessed how the Southeast Asian region became more secure, peaceful, stable and prosperous.
During the past year, for instance in the political and security field, Indonesia significantly strengthened ASEAN’s capacity to manage conflicts or disputes amongst its members.
For the first time in ASEAN history, conflict management between its members directly involved ASEAN.
Previously, ASEAN’s capacity to manage potential conflict between its members was questioned. During Indonesia’s Chairmanship, however, not only did ASEAN show its capacity to manage conflict, it also gained international recognition for this capacity, including by the UN Security Council and the International Court of Justice.
During Indonesia’s Chairmanship in 2011, efforts to uphold the values of democracy, human rights and good governance resulted in significant progress.
Significant progress in democratization in Myanmar in 2011 compared to previous years is indisputable.
Indonesia continuously contributed to the condition conducive to continued political and democratic transformation in Myanmar, including to ensure that Myanmar’s bid to become ASEAN Chair in 2014 served as a positive momentum that the democratization process in Myanmar would not stall, let alone be reversed.
Another important progress was the conclusion of negotiations between ASEAN member countries and the Nuclear Weapon States with regard to the latter’s accession to the Protocol of the Southeast Asia Nuclear Weapon-Free Zone Treaty.
A significant progress was made in 2011, after the lack of progress in the previous 10 years of negotiation.
This agreement means that more than 600 million people in the Southeast Asian region are free from the use of and the threat of using nuclear weapons.
As ASEAN Chair, Indonesia took concrete measures to create a regional environment that is conducive, stable, secure and peaceful.
Indonesia has shown its capability to manage potential conflict in the South China Sea by working hard to ensure the conclusion of an agreement between ASEAN and China on the Guidelines for the implementation of the Declaration on the Conduct of Parties in the South China Sea.
As you may recall, negotiations on the aforementioned Guidelines had been ongoing since 2005.With Indonesia’s encouragement and leadership, it was finally concluded in 2011.
After the conclusion of negotiations on the Guidelines, upon Indonesia’s initiative, a round of negotiations on the Code of Conduct, which would be more binding than the said Declaration, has been initiated.
Not only has such effort shown real progress, it also signified the commitment to resort to cooperation and dialogue in managing and resolving issues in the South China Sea.
Indonesia has also successfully reaffirmed the relevance of the ASEAN Regional Forum as a platform for discussion of security issues in Southeast Asia and East Asia.
On the margins of the ARF Ministerial Meeting in 2011 in Bali, for instance, Indonesia created conditions which made possible a meeting between North Korean and South Korean delegations, which was followed by the interactions between the two Foreign Ministers.
Also under the Chairmanship of Indonesia, efforts to give more meaning to and concrete forms of ASEAN centrality in the regional architecture were carried out. In conjunction with the admission of the Russian Federation and the United States of America to the East Asia Summit in Bali, Indonesia put forward basic principles that guide relations and interactions among key countries in East Asia.
At the East Asia Summit in Bali, the participating countries agreed to adopt a declaration that consists of 12 basic principles, known as the Bali Principles, which govern peaceful interactions among key countries in East Asia.
The Bali Principles are intended for the maintenance of friendly relations among countries, which are also stipulated, for example, in the Treaty of Amity and Cooperation (TAC) in Southeast Asia.
With the adoption of the Bali Principles, the 18 EAS participants committed themselves to refrain from the use of force or the threat of using force in solving problems among themselves.
In the economic and development field, Indonesia’s chairmanship of ASEAN coincides with the crippling of the global economy in the wake of the global financial crisis in 2008 and 2009.
The situation was also exacerbated by the crisis in the Eurozone, which caused the economic fundamentals of several countries in the European region to collapse.
During Indonesia’s Chairmanship in ASEAN, several measures were taken to ensure at least two things: First, to ensure that the economic crisis in the European region did not bring contagion to ASEAN and the East Asia region. Second, to ensure that there would be positive economic growth in the region so that it could contribute to overall global economic growth.
Throughout 2011, various initiatives were taken by Indonesia as Chair of ASEAN.
We witnessed the signing of the ASEAN Plus Three Emergency Rice Reserve (APTERR) by the ASEAN Ministers of Agriculture.
This to ensure the existence of an established regional mechanism for guaranteeing sustainable food supplies in the region. Obviously, this will play an important role in ensuring regional food security.
To encourage ASEAN to become the center of growth in Asia and the world, ASEAN countries actively forged cooperation with their Dialogue Partners as well as other international organizations in improving the connectivity of the region.
Through the implementation of the Master Plan on ASEAN Connectivity, the flow of trade and capital in the region is expected to increase, which would support ASEAN’s bid to become more competitive in the global economy.
During its tenure as ASEAN Chair, Indonesia encouraged equitable economic growth by endorsing “the ASEAN Framework for Equitable Economic Development”.
With this Framework, we expect that a broader participation of the people that will enhance the benefits we gained through our cooperation.
For the sociocultural pillar of its chairmanship, Indonesia placed emphasis on a caring society and people-centered ASEAN.
Indeed, having an ASEAN community that is more sensitive to humanitarian issues marked the Chairmanship of Indonesia in 2011, be that in its relations with member states as well as with ASEAN’s dialogue partners.
Recognizing that ASEAN countries, including Indonesia, are prone to natural disasters, capacity building of ASEAN member states in disaster management was given top priority.
The ASEAN Coordinating Center for Humanitarian Assistance on disaster management was launched during the chairmanship of Indonesia.
A Joint Concept was also developed by Indonesia and Australia within the EAS Framework to accelerate the humanitarian assistance and to enable debottlenecking of responses during the phase of emergency relief to countries affected by natural disasters.
Sympathy and solidarity to other ASEAN states and other countries who were experiencing occurrences of natural disaster were also shown during Indonesia’s chairmanship.
In the aftermath of the earthquake and tsunami in Japan, for instance, ASEAN member states mobilized humanitarian assistance in an effort to alleviate the impact of the natural disaster, among others by convening a special ASEAN-Japan Ministerial Meeting in response to the calamity.
Also in the field of socio-cultural cooperation, dialogue between the Heads of State/Government of ASEAN with civil society organizations (CSO) was resumed.
During the chairmanship of Indonesia, the CSO Forum was convened and attended by representatives from all ASEAN member states and was officially opened by the Vice President of the Republic of Indonesia.
Various agreements in the sociocultural field aimed at bringing ASEAN closer to the people were also concluded. These include agreements on youth and sports; women’s and children’s rights; migrant workers; emerging contagious diseases and the diversity of the identity of ASEAN peoples.
Several activities and programs that involved various segments of society were also held, including the ASEAN Fair, the ASEAN anniversary celebration, the ASEAN Culinary Festival, the ASEAN Youth Cultural Exchange Festival and the launching of ASEAN Bloggers forum.
Indonesia has initiated the vision of ASEAN post-2015, namely a common platform of ASEAN in responding to global issues in 2022.
As Chair of ASEAN in 2011, Indonesia is determined that its contribution goes beyond the period of its chairmanship.
Indeed, during the four decades of ASEAN’s journey, every time Indonesia served as ASEAN Chair, Indonesia always marked its chairmanship by taking ASEAN to a higher level.
For instance, in 1976, ASEAN member states concluded an ASEAN Concord with regard to the Treaty of Amity and Cooperation in Bali.
In 2003, also in Bali, ASEAN Member States agreed on the ASEAN Concord II to establish the ASEAN Community.
And in 2011, the Bali Concord III on the establishment of the ASEAN Community in a
Global Community of Nations was adopted.
In the Bali Concord III declaration, all the Heads of State/Government of ASEAN committed themselves to enhancing a more cohesive role of ASEAN in responding to global challenges.
One of the documents agreed on with regards to ASEAN’s role in the global community of nations is the Declaration of the ASEAN-UN Strategic Partnership.
In 2012, Indonesia will ensure the continuation of the three ASEAN priorities set by Indonesia in 2011 as endorsed by ASEAN member states.
Some major issues which are of great interests for Indonesia in 2012 are:
making progress in the discussions on the Code of Conduct on the South China Sea;
managing potential conflicts in the region;
development of democracy and reconciliation in Myanmar;
completion of the accession to the SEANWFZ Protocol by the Nuclear-Weapon-States;
enhancement of maritime cooperation;
implementation of a regional mechanism for disaster management, food security, energy security and economic sustainability of the region.
strengthening of the Bali Principles;
and a Plan of Action of the Bali Concord III.
In addition to cooperation with ASEAN countries as its immediate concentric circle, as a country that is part of the Pacific region, Indonesia also aims to deepen its cooperation with countries in the Pacific region through the South-west Pacific Dialog (SwPD) and the Pacific Islands Forum (PIF).
During 2011, Indonesia carried out various efforts to strengthen relations with organizations in the Pacific region.
An important development in 2011 was the endorsement of Indonesia’s application for observer status in the Melanesian Spearhead Group (MSG) at the 18th MSG Summit.
The acceptance of Indonesia as an observer to the MSG will enable Indonesia to enhance its cooperation and well-established relations with the member countries of the MSG.
Throughout 2011, Indonesia also accorded great attention to various inter-regional and intraregional cooperation mechanisms, such as APEC, the Asia-Europe Meeting (ASEM), and the Forum for East Asia-Latin America Cooperation (FEALAC) where Indonesia serves as coordinator for the Asian region, as well as the New Asia-Africa Strategic Partnership (NAASP).
As to the European region, the comprehensive partnership agreement that Indonesia has has nurtured mutually beneficial and equitable relationship with the European Union. Indonesia will soon ratify its comprehensive partnership with the EU, which provides a roadmap for future relations between the EU and Indonesia.
Another priority of Indonesia in regional cooperation in 2012 is to prepare for Indonesia’s chairmanship of APEC in 2013.
In addition to preparing for the chairmanship-related activities themselves, Indonesia will strive to generate momentum through substantive preparations and setting up priorities for its APEC Chairmanship in 2013.
Apart from APEC, Indonesia will also prioritize the strengthening of its role in and contribution to the Pacific Islands Forum (PIF). It is part of Indonesia’s foreign policy as a Pacific country to enhance cooperation with countries in the region.
Cooperation in the Indian Ocean region is also amongst of Indonesia’s priorities. As part of Indonesia’s initiatives to foster maritime cooperation, in 2012 Indonesia will accord more attention to maritime cooperation in the Indian Ocean.
Multilateral diplomacy is an integral part of Indonesia’s diplomacy and foreign policy.
As previously mentioned, current global challenges and the interlinkages of issues demand international cooperation.
Indonesia’s multilateral diplomacy is aimed at actively participating in the management of global issues, in particular those affecting our national interests.
Throughout 2011, the participation of the President in a number of forum, namely, WEF Davos, WEF on East Asia in Jakarta, the G-20 and APEC, highlighted Indonesia’s advocacy of a firm, balanced, and sustainable global economic growth.
Through various regional and international forum, such as ASEAN, APEC and the G-20, Indonesia has a major stake to ensure the realization of four targets of economic diplomacy: global economic stability recovery, acceleration of economic growth, facilitation of trade and investment inflows, and the achievement of equitable and sustainable economic growth.
In the area of international cooperation in climate change-related forest management, in 2011 Indonesia continued to optimize the Forest Eleven cooperation, which was initiated by the President of the Republic of Indonesia in 2007. During the Forest Eleven Ministerial Meeting that was conducted on the sidelines of the 66th Session of the UN General Assembly, the 14 tropical forest countries called for the strengthening of cooperation and effective partnership in sustainable forest management.
Indonesia has also forged partnership with the United Nations through the establishment of the United Nations Office for REDD+ Coordination in Indonesia (UNORCID), which will support the implementation of a coordinated REDD+ program in Indonesia.
Indonesia also reaffirmed its commitment in the protection and promotion of the rights of migrant workers, and in the area of cultural diversity, through the participation of the President as keynote speaker in ILO and UNESCO forum.
Furthermore, Indonesia hosted the Ministerial Conference and Commemorative Meeting of the 50th Anniversary of the Non-Aligned Movement (NAM) in Bali. On that occasion, President Yudhoyono identified a set of vision of the NAM for the next 50 years, which was endorsed by the NAM member states.
President Yudhoyono called for a new role of developing countries as net contributors to
global security, peace, development, human rights as well as democracy, and to nurture the spirit of partnership in tackling global challenges.
In this NAM meeting, the issue of Palestine gained special attention. On the initiative of
Indonesia, a roadmap was formulated for the recognition of Palestine statehood by the member states of the United Nations.
This clearly demonstrated Indonesia’s commitment to and support for the establishment of an independent and sovereign state of Palestine.
The implementation of multilateral diplomacy in the past year reaffirmed, among others, Indonesia’s leadership in fostering progress in various fields through consensus-building, cooperative approach, bridging differences without compromising national interests, accentuating convergence of interests in accordance with the spirit of multilateralism, and advocating the interest of developing nations in general.
The role and leadership of Indonesia in various international fora have provided added value to global efforts at responding to various challenges and have further enhanced Indonesia’s leverage in bilateral and regional diplomacy.
In line with the commitments that were made in early 2011, for instance in the field of disarmament and non-proliferation, Indonesia continues to serve as a country which consistently pursued this noble cause.
Indonesia demonstrated its leadership in this cause by ratifying the CTBT on 6 December 2011, which was warmly welcomed and appreciated by the international community.
This decision has not only earned the appreciation of the international community for
Indonesia’s leadership, it has also strengthened Indonesia’s credibility in encouraging other Annex II Countries to ratify the CTBT.
Additionally, Indonesia’s commitment to the maintenance of world peace is evident in its consistent contribution of troops to UN peacekeeping missions.
Indonesia’s commitment to enhancing peacekeeping contributions in both their qualitative and quantitative aspects was also much evident with the inauguration of the Indonesian Peacekeeping Center in Sentul by the President at the end of 2011.
Not only will the Peace Keeping Center be the training ground for Indonesian troops who will serve in the United Nations peacekeeping missions, it will also serve as the training center and the hub for peacekeeping troops in the Asia Pacific region.
Indonesia continues to enhance its profile in multilateral diplomacy in the field of human rights.
International recognition of Indonesia’s role in global human rights fora was clearly evident during the vote on Indonesia’s application for membership in the Human Rights Council for the period 2011-2014.
Indonesia obtained the highest number of votes amongst all candidates, a total of 184 votes.
Indonesia also continued to adjust its position on a number of human rights issues with regard to the situation in specific countries that obtained special attention at the annual deliberations of the Human Rights Council and the General Assembly.
Indonesia also played a major role in the establishment of a permanent and independent Human Rights Commission within the framework of the Islamic Cooperation Organization (OIC).
And Indonesia made significant progress in strengthening the national framework for the promotion and protection of human rights, by incorporating international norms and standards to the national framework.
Indonesia ratified the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities through Act No. 19 / 2011.
Indonesia also completed the preparatory process to ratifying other conventions, including the International Convention on the Protection of the Rights of All Migrant Workers and Members of Their Families, and the International Convention for the Protection of All Persons from Enforced Disappearance.
Throughout 2011, in regional and global fora, Indonesia stood faithful to its reputation as the 3rd largest democracy in the world, where Islam and democracy could flourish together.
In various global fora, Indonesia continued to be recognized as a country in the forefront of the cause of promoting democracy and democratic values.
Indonesia remained consistent with its principled position in responding to democratic developments and political transformation in the Middle East and North Africa.
At the regional level, Indonesia continued to encourage democratization in the Asian region, based on the pillars of inclusivity, homegrown democracy and sharing of lessons-learned and best practices.
Since its inception in 2008, the Bali Democracy Forum (BDF) has been gaining stronger appreciation from other countries in Asia as well as other regions.
The Forum has also been successful in placing democracy on the strategic agenda of the
Asian region, and has taken numerous cooperation initiatives that have strengthened democratic institutions in Asia.
In the last four years, the BDF became recognized as part of the democratic architecture in the region.
To further reaffirm democracy as a strategic agenda in the region, in 2012, at the 5th anniversary of the BDF, the Bali Democracy Forum will be organized at the Summit-level.
Indonesia also continued to play a role in mobilizing regional and global cooperation in enhancing the capacity to carry out disaster management.
With regard to the strengthening of the capacity to respond to natural disasters, Indonesia provided positive contribution by involving the military sector through the ARF Direx and enhancing the “debottlenecking capacity” of international cooperation in responding to natural disasters.
The aforementioned Indonesian and Australian concept paper with regard to enhancing international cooperation and the capacity to respond was endorsed and agreed upon in the EAS forum.
Indonesia’s experience has become a model for successful disaster management efforts, at both the policy and operational levels.
Indonesia’s commitment and accomplishments in this field gained the highest recognition at the international level with the conferment of the Global Champion for Disaster Risk Reduction Award to the President of the Republic of Indonesia by the UN Secretary-General on the sidelines of the ASEAN-UN Summit on 19 November 2011.
Furthermore, in 2011, Indonesia extended its solidarity to other countries that suffered natural disasters.
In the months and years ahead, with Indonesia’s profile greatly enhanced in the international community, the management of Indonesia’s humanitarian assistance and technical cooperation will be part of a more systematic soft power diplomacy.
In 2012, the agenda of Indonesia’s multilateral diplomacy will remain extremely important and substantial.
In the field of international peace and security, the Nuclear Security Summit will be convened in Seoul, in March 2012, to further deliberate upon the nuclear disarmament and nonproliferation agenda.
Sustainable development and the world’s economic agenda will be discussed at the Rio+20 Summit and the G-20 Summit in Brazil and Mexico in June 2012.
Indonesia will continue to play an active role in and provide positive contribution to the Summits’ preparatory process and the Summits themselves.
Also in 2012, Indonesia will continue to push for the UN reform, including Security Council reform, so that it will more faithfully reflect the world’s current realities and anticipate future ones. This is part of Indonesia’s efforts to nurture a more democratic framework for international relations.
One of the priorities of our diplomacy is to conclude land and maritime boundary negotiations, both in the forms of delimitation and demarcation.
Throughout 2011, Indonesia continued to intensify efforts to make progress in border negotiations with neighboring countries.
There were at least 38 border negotiations held last year, of which 16 were maritime negotiations and 22 were land boundary negotiations.
In 2010, there were 23 negotiations.
Through Indonesia’s intensive efforts regarding the Continental Shelf beyond 200-mile nautical miles west of the Sumatran coast, the UN Commission on the Limits of the Continental Shelf (CLCS) eventually recommended Indonesia’s calculation proposal, which confirmed the expansion of Indonesia’s territory on the Continental Shelf beyond 200-mile nautical miles west of the Sumatran coast to the size of 4209 km2 (approximately the size of Madura island).
This is a significant diplomatic achievement.
With several neighboring countries, namely, Malaysia and Singapore, we have also achieved significant progress in our maritime border negotiations.
We will intensify negotiations so that we can attain the expected outcomes within 2012.
The issue of protecting Indonesian citizens abroad was a major focus of our diplomatic endeavors throughout 2011.
Various measures were taken by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and our Representative
Offices abroad to ensure the protection of Indonesian citizens overseas.
At present, the issue is not only about protecting Indonesian migrant workers, but also protect all Indonesian citizens in such circumstances as political turmoil, natural disasters, and also special cases like piracy and hostage taking.
During 2011, a total of 38,884 Indonesian citizens who faced various problems while overseas were repatriated. Of this number, 24,488 returned home through direct facilitation of the Government of Indonesia.
With regard to the plight of Indonesians who fell into hands of pirates, all of the Indonesian crewmembers that were held hostage by Somali pirates, a total of 61 persons from eight ships bearing the flags of several nations, were rescued. At present, there is not a single Indonesian crewmember in the hands of pirates in Somalia. The Indonesian Government, through the Indonesian Embassy in Abuja, also worked hard to save an Indonesian national from hostage taking in Nigeria.
In this regard, in line with the instruction by the President, particular efforts were made to release the MV Sinar Kudus, an Indonesian ship held hostage in Somali waters. In the
Ministry’s records, the mission to rescue MV Sinar Kudus only took 46 days, one of the swiftest missions accomplished to release a ship from the clutches of Somali pirates.
With regard to efforts to protect Indonesian citizens who had been meted the death penalty, various diplomatic approaches were carried out at all levels, including at the level of Heads of State, directly involving the President, at the level of Foreign Ministers, and at the level of our missions abroad.
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs has conducted in-depth analysis of the legal frameworks in the receiving countries with regard to the protection of Indonesia’s migrants, to assess the availability of adequate guarantees of protection for them. This analysis will serve as an input to a comprehensive policy with regard to the sending of Indonesian migrant workers overseas.
Throughout 2011, with specific measures and in line with the President’s directive, including through the establishment of a task force, we succeeded in saving 35 Indonesian citizens from execution for the death penalty.
Among all Indonesian nationals facing the death penalty, more than 65 percent were sentenced for drugs offences and 31 percent for homicide – the types of criminal offences that face serious consequences in many countries, including Indonesia itself.
In the near future, in addition to enhancing our efforts to protect Indonesian citizens abroad, including through the establishment of agreements on migrant workers with the host countries, our diplomacy will place more emphasis on preventive and early detection measures.
The protection of Indonesian citizens and our solicitude for our citizens abroad is mandated by our Constitution.
To provide maximum protection for Indonesian migrant workers, a comprehensive system taking into account all aspects of their plight is imperative.
As a final thought, we realize that foreign policy will only be effective if it enjoys a strong sense of ownership and participation on the part of all stakeholders.
Throughout 2011, consultations and cooperation with all stakeholders, especially the Parliament, were regularly conducted. Such cooperation has brought about a common understanding on numerous international issues that touch on Indonesia’s national interests. These cooperation and consultations will be enhanced in the days to come.
The role of the press and mass media is also significant. In the current era, the media serve as a pillar for foreign politics and diplomacy. We truly appreciate the cooperation that has been extended to us all this time. We also convey our congratulations to the members of media who won the Adam Malik Award this year. We believe that such a good cooperation can further be improved in the future.
Undoubtedly, Indonesian foreign policy and diplomacy derives from the combined efforts of all elements of the nation.
Only through such combined efforts will Indonesia be able to exercise a greater role and influence in the region.
Only through such combined efforts will Indonesia be able to contribute more in variousglobal fora.
And only through such combined efforts could Indonesian foreign policy and diplomacy be dedicated to the national interest.
And to the attainment of Indonesia’s national development objectives and the welfare of all Indonesians.
This concludes my remarks, and I thank you.
Wassalamualaikum Warahmatullahi Wabaraktuh
Permanent Mission of the Republic of Indonesia to the United Nations, New York
325 East 38th Street, New York, NY, 10016, USA
Tel: 1.212.972.8333, Fax: 1.212.972.9780 - www.indonesiamission-ny.org