China, Indonesia agree on maritime, infrastructure co-op

China and Indonesia will enhance cooperation particularly in areas of maritime development and infrastructure, the two countries’ presidents agreed on Sunday.

President Joko Widodo’s proposal to build Indonesia a maritime power and Chinese President Xi Jinping’s initiative of the 21st Century Maritime Silk Road conform to each other to a very high extent, according to Xi, who met with Joko Widodo in Beijing.

“We can let the two development strategies interact with each other, push forward cooperation in the fields of infrastructure building, agriculture, finance and nuclear power, and fully utilize related mechanisms to advance maritime and aerospace cooperation,” Xi said.

Joko Widodo said Indonesia supports the establishment of the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB), and hopes it can join the project at an early stage.

Last month, 21 Asian countries signed the Memorandum of Understanding on Establishing AIIB that was initiated by China.

The Indonesian president told Xi his country hopes to continuously upgrade cooperation and relations with China, with maritime and infrastructure cooperation as priorities.

He arrived in Beijing on Saturday afternoon to attend the 22nd Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) Economic Leaders’ Meeting slated for Nov 10-11.

Xi told his Indonesian counterpart that the two countries, both as major developing countries in Asia, have common interests and responsibilities in key global and regional issues.

The two countries should look at their relations from a strategic and long-term perspective and strengthen cooperation on the basis of mutual understanding, support and trust, Xi said.

He said China attaches importance to bilateral cooperation in national defense, security, and people-to-people exchange.

Joko Widodo said Indonesia hopes that a Chinese cultural center can be set up in the country at an early stage.

The Chinese president stressed that China attaches importance to the role played by Indonesia in ASEAN as its largest member, and China is willing, together with Indonesia, to push forward the development of China-ASEAN relations, accelerate regional economic integration, and promote regional peace, stability and prosperity.

Xi also said the two countries should strengthen cooperation in international multilateral organizations and increase consultation and coordination on major global issues so as to jointly safeguard the interests of developing countries.