"We will make the Indonesian people love the oceans again," Minister Ramli stated while speaking at the Indonesia-Belgium Maritime Summit here, Wednesday.
To this end, the ministry has sent some one thousand students to explore the Indonesian waters, he stated.
Maritime and Fisheries Minister Susi Pudjiastuti, another speaker at the meeting, remarked that the maritime sector has been growing well in Indonesia.
Pudjiastuti informed Belgian businessmen attending the meeting that Indonesia enjoyed a surplus in maritime and fishery commodities.
"Immediately after being elected, President Joko Widodo reiterated that Indonesia is a maritime country," she recalled.
Indonesia has the worlds longest coastline after Canada, she stated.
"Indonesia could become a strong maritime state by applying strong policies," she emphasized.
Pudjiastuti cited as an example the stern sanctions she has imposed on the perpetrators of illegal fishing activities.
Flemish Minister for Work, Economy, Innovation and Sports Philippe Muyters stated that Belgium has a strong maritime sector, although it does not have a long coastline compared to Indonesia.
Belgium has several advanced seaports, such as Bruges, which serves as a gateway to West Europe.
Belgium has the worlds leading maritime construction companies, specialized in dredging and reclamation activities and coastal protection, enhanced by leading niche players in the fields of hydraulic and structural maritime engineering.
"We also have a large number of experts working in consulting companies and smaller niche solution providers," the Belgian government noted in a statement posted on its official website.
Belgium has three of the worlds leading semi-privately operated ports located in proximity to each other, which are highly competitive and well operated.
"We aim to share our expertise to help Indonesia progress!" it said.