Nusa Dua, Bali (ANTARA News) - Indonesian Foreign Minister Retno L.P. Marsudi said that Indonesia-Africa Forum (IAF) proves Indonesia`s commitment to improve cooperation with the African countries.
"For more than a year we have been working hard to prepare this forum. It shows Indonesia`s commitment to strengthen its love and cooperation with Africa," the minister stated at the opening of the IAF at the Nusa Dua Bali Convention Center on Tuesday.
Indonesia is eager to hold cooperation with the spirit of equality, care, and collaboration, which is sustainable and mutually beneficial.
"You may be wondering why Indonesia initiated the IAF; the immediate answer is that Indonesia loves Africa. Our love for Africa is not only reflected in words but also in deeds," Marsudi noted.
She stressed that Indonesia wants to play a role and be a part of development in African countries, by studying the vision of Africa 2063 and monitoring the progress of the African Free-Trade Continent.
The first day of IAF will consist of some panel of discussions between Indonesia and African countries on policy making and perspectives on strategic topics such as economic diplomacy, infrastructure development, financing facility initiatives, digital transformation, and strategic industries.
On the second day (April 11), an Indonesia-Africa Business Forum will be held to discuss important topics such as connectivity, digital economy, agriculture, small and medium enterprises (SMEs), South-South and Triangular Cooperation, as well as the future of Indonesia-Africa economic relations.
Throughout the forum, ministers, high-level officials, CEOs, bankers, and leaders of the Chamber of Commerce and Industry of Indonesia and African countries will discuss and exchange ideas.
"I am glad that a number of Indonesian state-owned companies have participated in this forum, including Pertamina, PT INKA, PT Dirgantara Indonesia, PT PAL, PT TIMAH, and many others," Marsudi remarked.
The foreign minister also welcomes the CEOs and business representatives from Africa, including Ethiopian Airlines, Topwide Ventures Limited, Africa Export-Import Bank, and Amirco Commercial Service.
IAF is an event held for the first time by the Indonesian government as a platform to encourage concrete economic cooperation between Indonesia and African countries.
IAF is in line with President Joko Widodo`s encouragement for Indonesia to enter non-traditional markets, especially Africa. The Indonesian government seeks to convert the proximity of Indonesia`s political relations with African countries to the proximity of economic relations.