Indonesia is celebrating its 78th Independence this year. It is home to over 278 million people, the world’s fourth largest nation in terms of population, and the world’s largest archipelagic state, with more than 17,000 islands.
Indonesia has abundant resources and has become the largest economic country in the region, and has proven to be one of the strongest nations in terms of maintaining its economic resilience. Compared to other countries in the world, Indonesia had a low inflation of only 3.08 percent in July 2023, which was the 6th lowest inflation rate (after China, Switzerland, Saudi Arabia, South Korea, and Spain), The robustness of Indonesia’s manufacturing sector, driven by the strong domestic consumption, is the largest contributor to Indonesia’s gross domestic product (GDP), making up 18.3 percent of total GDP in 2022. The leading manufacturing sub-sectors include basic metal, machinery, leather and footwear, textiles, transportation tools, electronics, pulp and paper, and food & beverage. These sub-sectors support other down-stream industries such as energy, information technology, communication, transportation, and logistics.
In July 2023, Indonesia reacquired its status as an ‘upper-middle-income country’, according to the World Bank, putting it back on track to pursue its high-income status goal — an ambition for 2045, the centenary of Indonesia’s independence.
Indonesia had successfully presided over the G20 last year and became the chairman of ASEAN this year. The tagline of this year’s chairmanship of ASEAN is ‘ASEAN Matters: Epicentrum of Growth’.
Fifty-five years ago, on 28 February 1968, Kuwait and Indonesia initiated diplomatic relations that have grown in strength over the years through reciprocal visits by leaders, and other high ranking officials of both countries.
The two countries have also signed the agreement on the establishment of a joint commission.The first meeting was held in Kuwait in 2019 attended by Indonesian Foreign Minister, Her Excellency Retno Lestari Priansari Marsudi and the second will be held in Jakarta.
In terms of manpower, the Government of the Republic of Indonesia and the Government of the State of Kuwait signed a Memorandum of Understanding on 30 May 1996 regarding the Placement of Manpower, which remains valid until now. This MoU regulates the governance of the placement of migrant workers according to demand and supply and based on work contracts. So far there are around 7,000 Indonesian people here in Kuwait, most of whom work in the health, oil and gas, hospitality and manufacturing sectors.
Both countries have a rich culture and a sea-faring background. I am sure that based on the connection shared throughout these years, both Indonesia and Kuwait have similar goals to build and maintain stability in international relations.
– H.E. Lena Maryana
Ambassador of the Republic of Indonesia, Kuwait.