Foreign Minister Vivian Balakrishnan in Jakarta for working visit

Foreign Minister Vivian Balakrishnan wrote in a Facebook post that he had a wide-ranging conversation with Dr Yudhoyono on common regional and global challenges that Singapore and Indonesia face.
Foreign Minister Vivian Balakrishnan wrote in a Facebook post that he had a wide-ranging conversation with Dr Yudhoyono on common regional and global challenges that Singapore and Indonesia face.PHOTO: FACEBOOK/VIVIAN BALAKRISHNAN

JAKARTA - Singapore's Foreign Minister Vivian Balakrishnan is in Jakarta for a working visit from Tuesday (Feb 13) to Wednesday.

Earlier on Tuesday, he called on former president, Dr Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono, at his residence, and also Industry Minister Airlangga Hartarto.

Dr Balakrishnan wrote in a Facebook post that he had a wide-ranging conversation with Dr Yudhoyono on common regional and global challenges that Singapore and Indonesia face.

"We discussed the continued relevance of Singapore's Asean chairmanship priorities of 'innovation' and 'resilience', even as we collectively face the challenges posed by the digital revolution and changing geostrategic balance," he said.

He added that Dr Yudhoyono played an important role in charting Asean's journey and shaping its development, and that it was an honour to draw from his "wellspring of experience".

Dr Balakrishnan also said he enjoyed the exchange of views, including on political and economic developments, with Mr Airlangga, who is also chairman of Golkar, the second largest political party in Indonesia.

"There is room to do much more, including by deepening cooperation in the Kendal Industrial Park and in the Batam, Bintan and Karimun region, and enhancing our business and investment environments for mutual benefit," he said. "Looking forward to working together closely to take our economic cooperation in traditional and emerging areas to the next level."

Dr Balakrishnan also met Jakarta governor Anies Baswedan on Tuesday, and he will be meeting his Indonesian counterpart, Ms Retno Marsudi, on Wednesday morning before returning to Singapore.