Military relations with China at best level: Indonesian ambassador

Beijing (ANTARA News) - The military relations between Indonesia and China are currently at the best level in the entire history of the ties between the two countries, Indonesian ambassador to China and Mongolia Soegeng Rahardjo said.

"With the improving bilateral relations in the military field, military cooperation between the two has also expanded," he stated at a ceremony to mark the 71st anniversary celebrations of the Indonesian Military (TNI) here on Tuesday.

The TNI marked its 71st anniversary on October 5.

Indonesia and China have had defense cooperation since the establishment of the Defense Bilateral Consultation Forum in 2007 as part of the Strategic Partnership Declaration agreed upon by the two countries on April 25, 2005.

Later, in in October 2013, the two countries agreed to develop a strategic comprehensive partnership.

The cooperation in the military field between Indonesia and China began with an exchange of visits of ranking officers of the military, exchange of port visits, exchange of officers of Staff and Command School or the National Defense Institute.

"There is also a simulator training going on for the Indonesian Air Force's Sukhoi fighters," the ambassador added.

Regarding the defense industry, he noted, Indonesias Ministry of Defense and the State Administration of Science, Technology and Industry for National Defense of the Peoples Republic of China (SASTINED) signed a memorandum of understanding on March 22, 2011.

The MoU on defense industry cooperation covered military equipment procurement in certain agreed upon areas based on government-to-government mechanism.

They also agreed for technology exchange regarding certain kinds of military equipment, including assembling, testing, maintenance, modification, up-grading and training.

"Apart from various such achievements, the two countries also agreed to study further possibilities to develop bilateral cooperation to a higher level," ambassador Soegeng commented.(*)