Gambia eager to strengthen capacity building cooperation with Indonesia

Jakarta (ANTARA News) - The Gambian government has stated its intention to strengthen cooperation in capacity building including for its farmers, with Indonesia.

Indonesias support was crucial for the agricultural development as Gambia planned to increase rice production, Gambian Foreign Affairs Minister Neneh Macdouall-Gaye said after a meeting with Indonesian Foreign Minister Retno LP Marsudi on the sidelines of the Fifth Extraordinary Summit of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC), here, Sunday.

Gambia also needs capacity building in protocol arrangement because the African nation plans to host the 14th OIC Summit in 2018.

"Since our first meeting in Jakarta in April 2015, there have been a lot of progresses achieved by Indonesia and Gambia in capacity building cooperation particularly in the agricultural field and in preparing Gambia to become an OIC Summit host in 2018," Minister Retno Marsudi said.

The two ministers also discussed a plan to organize the second Indonesia-Gambia Joint Commission Meeting in Gambia.

The previous Joint Commission Meeting was held in March 2013.

In 2014, Indonesia gave five hand tractors to the Agricultural Rural Farmer Training Center (ARFTC) located in Jenoi, Gambia.

The training center was set up with the assistance of Indonesia in 1998.

The center supported among others by Indonesian agricultural experts, has trained a total of 5,114 farmers from Gambia and neighboring countries such as Senegal, Mali, Niger, Sierra Leone, Guinea-Bissau, and Guinea.

Minister Neneh also met officials of the Indonesian Chamber of Commerce and Industry (Kadin) to discuss efforts to step up economic cooperation between Indonesia and Gambia.

The trade balance between Indonesia and Gambia reached US$25.29 million in 2015.

Indonesias exports to the African country included crude palm oil (CPO), soaps and food.