Jakarta (ANTARA) —The Melanesian Spearhead Group (MSG) team, led by Director General Leonard Louma and Executive Advisor Christopher Nisbert, emphasized that Papua is stable and conducive overall. Economic and social activities are well and normal.

The statement was released after the two MSG officials visited and observed the Land of Cenderawasih, as Papua is known, traveling overland from Port Moresby, Papua New Guinea (PNG) to Jayapura on Monday (17 June 2024).

Usman Kansong, Head of the Public Communication Task Force for Papua Welfare, appreciated the MSG team’s visit. He considered it a positive step because the team could directly witness the conditions and various developments that the government has undertaken in Papua.

“This is a positive step, and I would like to express my appreciation for MSG because its two leaders were able to witness the real conditions in Bumi Cenderawasih,” he said when contacted in Jakarta on Tuesday (18 June 2024).

During their visit, both Leonard Louma and Christopher Nisbert agreed that Indonesia could serve as a good example of how a country manages its borders. These good practices could be emulated in border areas in the MSG region.

They also believe that Indonesia's important role in the ASEAN region will be crucial and beneficial for MSG member countries, providing various advantages and benefits in multiple fields.

Specifically, Leonard Louma revealed that he would promote cooperation in the plantation sector within MSG that involves Indonesia, including a vanilla plantation program in Vanuatu and the Solomon Islands.

Therefore, he believes it is necessary to create an economic corridor in the form of an MSG vanilla association to strengthen the vanilla commodity in the region.

Indonesia's involvement is crucial because it is believed to help open the ASEAN market. This is highly beneficial as MSG is working to build communication and involve Indonesia regionally.

During his visit, Leonard Louma also discussed the potential for cooperation in education between MSG and Indonesia, suggesting that student and faculty exchanges can be realized soon.

Separately, Senior Advisor of the Presidential Staff Office Theo Litaay deemed the visit of MSG leaders to Indonesia as a significant breakthrough that benefits the region across various economic, socio-cultural, and political sectors.

"Such regional cooperation will expand economic growth towards the Pacific. This region will benefit from economic growth in Southeast Asia as a driver for their development. That is from a regional perspective,” he said.

Leonard Louma and Christopher Nisbert, along with their entourage, visited Indonesia from Port Moresby via an overland journey to the Skouw-Wutung border on Monday (17 June 2024). Around 10:00 AM local time, they arrived at the Skouw Border Post and were accompanied by Indonesian Consul General Tangkuman Alexander.

Representatives from the Border Affairs and Cooperation Agency of Papua Province accompanied them from the post. They continued their journey to the city of Jayapura to observe the developments in Papua.

Both MSG leaders will attend the MSG Security Strategy (MSG SS) organized by the Indonesian Ministry of Foreign Affairs on Wednesday (19 June 2024) in Jakarta. The MSG SS aims to gather various inputs from Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs), including civil society, regarding key priorities in addressing security challenges in the region.

Reporter: PR Wire
Editor: PR Wire
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