At our first meeting, we spoke openly and friendly. Among the several issues that we have discussed at the meeting is first, the significance of cooperation to protect Indonesian citizens in Malaysia.
Jakarta (ANTARA) - President Joko Widodo sought the conclusion of a memorandum of understanding (MoU) for protecting Indonesian domestic helpers employed in Malaysia during a meeting with Prime Minister Dato’ Sri Ismail Sabri Yaakob here on Wednesday.

“At our first meeting, we spoke openly and friendly. Among the several issues that we have discussed at the meeting is first, the significance of cooperation to protect Indonesian citizens in Malaysia,” Widodo said at a joint press conference with Yaakob at the Bogor Presidential Palace.

This is Yaakob’s first visit to Indonesia since he was inaugurated as prime minister on August 21, 2021 after Muhyiddin Yassin stepped down from the post.

Indonesia was also the first ASEAN country that Mahathir Mohammad visited early in 2020 after he assumed office as Malaysian Prime Minister, Widodo noted.

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The other issue related to the protection of Indonesian citizens in Malaysia is a request for the immediate issuance of a permit to set up a community learning center in the Malaysian Peninsula, in accordance with the principles of education for all, Widodo said.

The protection of Indonesian citizens in Malaysia was one of the four issues discussed by Widodo and Yaakob during their meeting

"Secondly, we want to conclude immediately negotiations on state borders, both air and sea borders, since (the negotiations) have made slow progress. We hope the issue could be solved as soon as possible,” Widodo said.

The third issue is related to post-pandemic economic recovery, he added.

“I warmly welcome a 49-percent increase in trade value in the January-August 2021 period compared to the same period last year. To support economic recovery, we have agreed to make a travel corridor arrangement in which we will gradually open (travel corridor) one by one,” he said.

The fourth issue is related to Myanmar and the South China Sea, he informed.

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“It is an honor for me as well as Indonesia to receive the first overseas visit of the ninth Malaysian Prime Minister, Mr. Dato’ Sri Ismail Sabri Yaakob. As close neighboring states and cognate nations, we must strengthen cooperation based upon the principles of mutual respect and benefit,” he said.

The two state leaders also witnessed the signing of an MoU in the education sector and an MoU on administrative assistance in the customs field on Wednesday.

Foreign Minister Retno Marsudi, Finance Minister Sri Mulyani Indrawati, Education, Culture, Research, and Technology Minister Nadiem Anwar Makarim, and Minister/State Secretary Pratikno were also present at the event.

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Translator: Desca Lidya Na, Suharto
Editor: Fardah Assegaf
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