Jakarta (Indonesia Window) – A tropical city in the north of the state of Queensland and a gateway to Australia’s Great Barrier Reef, Cairns is a home to 165,525 people (data as of June 2018), with more than 400 of them are Indonesian or have Indonesian background.
Of these, more than 200 people are able to speak Indonesian and use it at home or in neighbourhoods.
The influence of Indonesian people and cultures in Cairns much more than that. Indonesian people are also known for their active role in building and maintaining multicultural relations in the fifth largest population city in Queensland.
Therefore, Cairns mayor Bob Manning did not hesitate to acknowledge the positive role of the Indonesian people living in the city he led while receiving the Consul General of the Republic of Indonesia in Sydney, Heru Hartanto Subolo and his wife, Sinta Subolo, at Cairns City Hall on Thursday (July 25) .
“The Indonesian people here include those who are very active in the development of multicultural communities in Cairns. They actively participate in multicultural events in Cairns,” mayor Bob Maning said.
He noted that Indonesian people also regularly organized Indonesian festivals every two years.
“Last year I was present to give a speech at the Festival.”
Meanwhile for Consul General Heru Subolo, Cairns is one of the targets of his working visit which is part of the sub-regional diplomacy that continues to be carried out by the RI’s Consulate General in Sydney to promote, inform and present Indonesia in non-metropolitan areas under the consulate’s working area.
“My office is based in Sydney, but my work area covers about 43 percent of Australia’s total area, namely, the states of New South Wales, Queensland and South Australia,” Subolo Consul General told mayor Manning.
According to the Consul General, areas outside metropolitan cities have an important role to play in implementing the Strategic Comprehensive Partnership between Indonesia and Australia.
“Therefore, I specifically schedule my first visit to establish good relations with the Cairns regional administration and other parties, and meet with the Indonesian people,” the consul general said.
In addition to meeting the Cairns mayor, the consul general was also scheduled to hold meetings with local media and authorities, and open consular and immigration services on Saturday (July 27).
Reporting by Indonesia Window