WATCH: China's Wang Qishan hails Indonesia's involvement in the Belt and Road Initiative
Chinese Vice President Wang Qishan on Monday wrapped up a friendly visit to Indonesia as a special envoy of Chinese President Xi Jinping, with the two countries agreeing to further cement their partnership.
During the trip, which started Friday, Wang attended the inauguration ceremony of Indonesian President Joko Widodo for his second term, and met separately with Widodo as well as outgoing Indonesian Vice President Jusuf Kalla and his successor, Ma'ruf Amin. In his meeting with Widodo, Wang first conveyed Xi's warm congratulations and best wishes, noting that China and Indonesia are good neighbors, good friends and good partners.
With both being major developing countries in Asia and also in the world, the China-Indonesia relationship carries a significance that transcends the bilateral scope, added the Chinese vice president. Beijing, Wang said, appreciates Widodo's commitment to promoting the comprehensive strategic partnership between the two countries, and his active support for and participation in synergizing the China-proposed Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) and Indonesia's development strategies.
He noted that the Jakarta-Bandung high speed rail (HSR) project, which the heads of state of both countries care about and support, is proceeding smoothly and has become a model for bilateral cooperation in infrastructure construction. Wang also expressed his confidence that Widodo will lead the Southeast Asian country to greater achievements in the coming five years and that China-Indonesia relations will be lifted to higher levels.
For his part, Widodo thanked Xi for sending a special envoy to his inauguration ceremony, adding that the gesture epitomizes the close relationship between the two countries. The Indonesian president extended warm congratulations on the 70th anniversary of the founding of the People's Republic of China (PRC), and wished China greater prosperity and bigger contributions to global and regional peace and stability.
The new Indonesian government, he added, is willing to further consolidate the bilateral comprehensive strategic partnership, enhance the synergy between Indonesia's Global Maritime Fulcrum vision and the BRI, and expand cooperation with China in building regional economic corridors. In his talks with Kalla, Wang pointed out that the traditional friendship between the two countries has a long history. Historically speaking, both countries are representatives of Eastern civilizations with highly distinctive historical and cultural traditions, noted Wang, adding that today both are emerging economies and important members of the G20.
The two sides, he pointed out, enjoy geographical, historical and cultural advantages in developing their relations and promoting bilateral cooperation, and also have practical needs to learn from each other and pursue mutual benefits. Wang said he hopes that the outgoing Indonesian vice president will continue to wield his influence and help push for more progress in the development of China-Indonesia friendly ties. Kalla, for his part, spoke highly of the enormous achievements the PRC has made since its founding 70 years ago and the major opportunities the BRI has created for Indonesia's development.
China's development has made important contributions to Asia, Kalla said, adding that Indonesia-China relations have grown ever closer over recent years with a series of cooperation projects being carried out. Noting that the Jakarta-Bandung HSR project has become an important sign of the continuously deepening and materializing economic and trade cooperation between the two countries, he said Chinese enterprises are welcome to do business and invest in Indonesia.
During his meeting with Amin, Wang congratulated him on assuming the new post, adding that the priority the new Indonesian government gives to development and education reflects its deep commitment to the people. Noting that both China and Indonesia uphold the philosophy of peaceful development, he said the bilateral comprehensive strategic partnership, which is led by the two countries' heads of state, has been moving forward in an all-round way over recent years, with the Indonesian side responding positively to the BRI and the bilateral relationship moving to higher levels. The Chinese side has full confidence in the further deepening of cooperation between the two countries, added Wang.
Calling China a sincere strategic partner of his country, Amin said the new Indonesian government's policy is aimed at pursuing the country's continued development and prosperity. The Indonesian side, he added, stands ready to work with China to boost cooperation in investment, trade and particularly vocational and technical education, deepen youth and cultural exchanges, and push for greater progress in the development of bilateral relations. Also during his stay in Indonesia, Wang paid a visit to Solo, a major city in Central Java, inspected the No. 1 tunnel of the Jakarta-Bandung HSR project, and met with Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison at the latter's request.