Minister Retno: US is ASEAN’s Strategic Partner in the Region

Bogor, MINA – Minister of Foreign Affairs Retno Marsudi attended the ASEAN-United States (US) Summit virtually on Saturday morning. She conveyed the important message to keep strengthening relations between the two parties.

“The United States is one of ASEAN’s strategic partners in the region and this cooperation has developed in various fields,” said the Foreign Minister in his press statement after the meeting.

The presence of the Foreign Minister at the meeting represented President Joko Widodo, while from the US side the National Security Advisor (NSA) Robert O’Brien represented President Donald Trump.

In the last four years, said the Foreign Minister, the economic cooperation and development of the two parties have developed well. The US continues to be ASEAN’s second largest trading and investment partner.

“The ASEAN-US trade figure increased by 39 percent from US$ 211.8 billion to US$ 294.6 billion. The US investment rose 110 percent from US$ 11.65 to US$ 24.5 billion, ” she added.

In the energy sector, ASEAN-US has developed long-term cooperation for the period 2021 to 2025.

In the digital economy sector, a capacity building program has been carried out for 4,000 MSMEs (Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises). In the last 10 months, said the Foreign Minister, strengthening cooperation was also carried out in the health sector.

“In the future, Indonesia still hopes that the US will become an important and strategic partner in the Indo-Pacific region, including in the implementation of the ASEAN Outlook on the Indo-Pacific. This partnership is expected to be a positive force to create peace, stability and prosperity in the region, “concluded the Foreign Minister. (L/RE1)

Mi’raj News Agency (MINA)