Indonesia can help make peace between Russia-Ukraine: Media figure

Aat Surya Safaat, the Head of Foreign Affairs of the Indonesian Cyber Media Union (SMSI). (Private file)

Jakarta (Indonesia Window) – The Head of Foreign Affairs of the Indonesian Cyber ​​Media Union (SMSI), Aat Surya Safaat, has assessed that Indonesia as the Chair of the G20 could help bring about peace between Russia and Ukraine and call on countries supporting both sides to restrain.

“Indonesia has so far been good friends, both with Russia and Ukraine, especially since Indonesia is currently the Chair of the G20. So, Indonesia has a golden opportunity to contribute to the realization of Russia-Ukraine peace,” he said when talking with reporters in Jakarta, Sunday (March 6).

The News Director of ANTARA News Agency in 2016, who was also the Head of the agency’s New York Bureau (1993-1998) stated that as the Chair of the G20, the initiator of the Non-Aligned Movement, and an influential country in ASEAN, Indonesia has the momentum to take diplomatic steps to stop the Russia-Ukraine war.

The G20 or Group of Twenty itself is a multilateral cooperation forum consisting of 19 main countries, namely South Africa, the United States, Saudi Arabia, Argentina, Australia, Brazil, China, India, Indonesia, Britain, Italy, Japan, Germany, Canada, Mexico, South Korea, Russia, France and Turkey, and the European Union.

Indonesia was appointed the host or G20 Presidency in 2022 through the handover at the Summit in Rome, Italy, in October 2021. Indonesia received the G20 leadership from Italy, as well as being the 5th Asian country to host the G20 Summit after Japan, China, South Korea, and Saudi Arabia.

Indonesia welcomes the responsibilities of the G20 Presidency in the midst of economic recovery due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Under the theme ’Recover Together, Recover Stronger’, Indonesia wants to invite the whole world to work hand in hand, support each other to recover together, and grow stronger and more sustainable.

The Head of Foreign Affairs of the SMSI further stated that not only does Indonesia need to take advantage of the momentum as the Chair of the G20 to encourage the global economy which has slumped due to the COVID-19 pandemic, but also need to become a catalyst for world peace, particularly to stop the Russian-Ukrainian armed conflict.

Indonesia, which holds the G20 presidency, is scheduled to carry out a G20 Summit in Bali in November 2022. This momentum needs to be utilized optimally by making effective diplomatic breakthroughs for the benefit of the international cooperation and peace.

According to Aat, Indonesia also wants to invite Russia and Ukraine to sit together at one table to find a solution to create a win-win solution, in which both parties can get what they expect. Although it might not be satisfactory, at least none of them would not be harmed.

“The Russia-Ukraine peace talks also need to involve former Indonesian Ambassadors to Russia and former Indonesian Ambassadors to Ukraine, because I believe they have experience and broad and wise views regarding the importance of friendship between countries,” said the advisor to the Indonesian Academic Forum (FAI).

Meanwhile, information from the Indonesian Ministry of Foreign Affairs stated that Russia is a trading partner and one of Indonesia’s largest sources of investment, with an average trade balance in the last five years of 2.3 billion U.S. dollars.

In the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic, the trade balance in 2020 was able to record a surplus on the Indonesian side of 16 million U.S. dollars, with a total trade volume of 1.93 billion U.S. dollars.

On the other hand, the value of Russia’s direct investment in Indonesia in 2020 was recorded at 4.6 million U.S. dollars with 202 projects, mostly in the chemical and pharmaceutical industry sectors.

In the cooperation in the field of education, there are currently around 700 Indonesian students studying in Russia, some of whom are receiving scholarships from the Russian government.

Specifically regarding the Indonesia-Ukraine relations, some time ago the General Chair of the Great Indonesia Creative House (RKIH) Kris Budihardjo visited Ukraine on October 14-17, 2019, to promote Indonesian creative products in one of the countries in Eastern Europe.

During the visit to Ukraine, he invited Indonesian businesspeople from various business fields, such as coffee exporters, entrepreneurs in the procurement of main equipment for weapons systems/equipment for defense and security, and entrepreneurs from associations of craftsmen. Ukraine itself is a large importer of Indonesian palm oil.

At that time, the Indonesian Ambassador to Ukraine, Prof. Dr. Yuddy Chrisnandi expressed his gratitude to the General Chairman of RKIH who brought a letter from President Joko Widodo regarding the appointment of Alexander Feldman (Jr.) as the Indonesian Honorary Consul in the city of Kharkiv in Ukraine, as well as carrying the mission of introducing Indonesian creative products in Ukraine.

On the same occasion, Alexander Feldman expressed his readiness to carry out Indonesia’s interests in Kharkiv and help enhance Indonesia-Ukraine cooperation on the sectors of economy, trade, tourism, education and friendship relations between the two countries’ peoples.

Reporting by Indonesia Window

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