JAKARTA, KOMPAS.com – For decades, the cooperation of Japan and Indonesia has evolved around economic interaction, such as trade and investment. But recently, both countries agreed to promote political and security cooperation.
Speaking to go.kompas.com, Japan’s Ambassador to Indonesia Kenji Kanasugi expressed hope that political and security cooperation between both countries will continue to increase.
“It’s a new area of cooperation. I would like to see this [political and security cooperation] more developing in the future,” said Kanasugi recently.
Kanasugi, who presented his credentials to President Joko Widodo on Feb. 4, 2021, said that the political and security issue is among the areas of cooperation to create and maintain a free, open, and prosperous Indo-Pacific between the two strategic partners.
Also read: Jokowi to Japan PM Kishida: Indonesia Will Speed Up Jakarta Metro, Patimban Seaport Project
When giving an example, he said that Japan’s Ground Self-Defense Force participated in joint exercises with the US and Indonesian armies last August. The training exercises took place in the south of the Indonesian island of Sumatra.
Initially, the joint exercise, known as Garuda Shield, was attended by the US and the Indonesian armies. The annual joint exercise started in 2007.
This year, however, the unprecedented multinational military exercises were dubbed 'Super Garuda Shield' and gathered Australia, Japan, Singapore, and other countries.
“This year, Indonesia expanded [the military exercises] into a multilateral framework. For the first time in history, Japan’s Land Self-Defense Force was invited to take part in the Super Garuda Shield training exercise,” the ambassador said.
Besides, the two countries also conducted Japan-Indonesia Foreign and Defense Ministerial Meeting or “2+2” ministerial meeting since its establishment in 2015 in Tokyo.