The long historical bond between Indonesia and Madagascar should now be transformed ..."
Jakarta (ANTARA News) - Indonesia and Madagascar can use their historical bond to develop mutually beneficial economic cooperation, a foreign affairs ministry official said.

"The long historical bond between Indonesia and Madagascar should now be transformed into a mutually beneficial economic cooperation," Lasro Simbolon, the director for the African Affairs of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, said in a press statement received here on Friday.

Simbolon had made the statement in a discussion on increasing the bilateral cooperation between Indonesia and Madagascar on Wednesday.

The discussion was aimed to provide a wider understanding of the relation between Indonesia and Madagascar and potential for increasing cooperation in the future.

The discussion was organized by the African Affairs Directorate of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in cooperation with Bimasena Mines and Energy Society on the sidelines of the ongoing visit to Indonesia by representatives from the Center for Diplomatic and Strategic Affairs (CDSS) of Madagascar. The visit that started on April 14, 2015, will conclude on April 22, 2015.

During the discussion, Simbolong expressed hope that the CDSS chairman, Solofo Rosoarahona, would convince the Madagascar Government to open its embassy in Jakarta.

He remarked that opening an embassy in Jakarta will be as good as having a representative in the 10 member states of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations, as Jakarta hosts the ASEAN secretariat.

On the occasion, Rosoarahona also gave a presentation on the wealth and biodiversity of Madagascar, domestic security and defense issues, and opportunities for cooperation with Indonesia in those fields.

The Indonesia-Madagascar trade was worth only $US64 million in 2014, but the trade figure of the two countries is showing an upward trend in 2015.

Indonesias exports to Madagascar include crude palm oil, food items, household appliances, electronic goods, and vehicle spare parts.

Editor: Priyambodo RH
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