Speech by Mark Rutte at the Business Cocktail Reception in Jakarta

Short speech by the Dutch Prime Minister, Mark Rutte, at the Business Cocktail Reception, Jakarta.

Your Excellencies, ladies and gentlemen,

Selamat datang.

Welcome to the beautiful tropical gardens of the Borobudur Hotel. Let me begin by thanking our hosts, the Indonesian and Dutch Chambers of Commerce and employers’ associations. I’m delighted that so many people from the Indonesian and Dutch business communities could be here. That bodes well for this economic mission. And for the future economic ties between our two countries.

Because those economic ties are the main focus of this visit. Indonesia and the Netherlands share a long and eventful history. A history that has seen several ups and downs. But our past is something we share, and something that helps us face the future together. If I say anemer, bensin or kantor pos, both Dutch and Indonesian people will understand what I mean. But it is important not to get stuck in the past. The world is changing, and Indonesia is no exception. It has become a major global player, politically and economically. Its economy is growing by around six per cent a year, and it is a prominent member of the UN, the G20 and above all ASEAN.

We in the Netherlands admire these achievements. And Dutch companies are showing more and more interest in Indonesia. So it’s only logical that this is the biggest Dutch economic mission to Indonesia ever. With representatives of over a hundred companies from sectors where the Netherlands has always excelled. Sectors where we already work closely together and which offer the best opportunities for the future.

Horticulture, agri-food, life sciences and health, logistics and water.

Representatives of these sectors are here today. You’ve already met one another and exchanged ideas over the past two days. No doubt all sorts of plans are taking shape. May the discussions continue in the days ahead – and don’t forget to swap business cards! For this trip offers many opportunities. We can share knowledge and support each other. This is already happening on a large scale.

For example, I have seen how Dutch companies like Van Oord and Royal HaskoningDHV are working with Indonesian companies to develop the port of Jakarta. Very impressive – there’s no other way to describe it. Or take the Dutch company RESIN and its Indonesian partner Polymindo: they have developed a completely new, fire-retardant plastic based on non-toxic technology. And they are so pleased with the new material that they are now jointly introducing it on the Indonesian market.

Then there is East-West Seed, which supports innovation in the horticultural sector, and Frisian Flag, with its ‘dairy villages’ project, which is doing the same in the Indonesian dairy sector. So cooperation between our two countries is blossoming, even though they are thousands of kilometres apart.

I hope that many more ideas and contacts like this will develop during this trip. So that we can further deepen our special, long-standing relationship by making joint plans for the future.

Terima kasih, thank you.

Let us raise our glasses to the friendship between our countries, to new opportunities and to the Indonesian and Dutch business people who are seizing these opportunities.