Obama’s Visit Will Make US And Indonesia ‘True Partners’


Jakarta. US President Barack Obama’s expected arrival in Indonesia on Tuesday for his first visit since his childhood years here has put the spotlight on Indonesia’s rising international profile.

As a member of the Group of 20 largest economies and the world’s fourth most populous country, and with political stability and a dynamic economy cemented in place, Indonesia finally has a global voice in keeping with its size, believes Foreign Minister Marty Natalegawa.

In a wide-ranging exclusive interview with the Jakarta Globe, he outlined what he sees as Indonesia’s role in the world and its “true partnership” with the US.

Obama’s visit, part of a four-nation trip to Asia, will see the official start of the long-awaited Comprehensive Partnership between Jakarta and Washington, with the “important” step of Obama and Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono putting their presidential stamps on a process that began nearly 18 months ago. It has taken so long because Obama has had to delay his visit here twice.

Marty described the partnership as a way to deepen ties and to create a relationship between equals that covered economics and business, education, interfaith dialogue, climate change and civil society.

“The US remains a global powerhouse and despite the apparent gap between our two nations, we treat one another as true partners,” he said.