Seven decades of diplomatic relations with Indonesia

tree covered islands

Palau Serangan Island near Bali in Indonesia, © picture alliance

25.06.2022 - Article

280 million people, 17,500 islands, the world’s third-largest democracy – Indonesia is a key partner for Germany in the Indo-Pacific. On 25 June, the two countries mark 70 years of diplomatic relations. Why the G7 and G20, as well as mangroves and the energy transition, are important today.

2022 is a special year for the German-Indonesian friendship. Exactly 70 years ago, the two countries established diplomatic relations. Ten years ago, they expanded their cooperation into a strategic partnership. And Indonesia and Germany currently hold the Presidency of the G20 and the G7 respectively.

Skyline of Jakarta at night
Skyline of Jakarta at night© picture alliance / Zoonar.com/Daniel Walther

A key partner in the Indo-Pacific

With a population of almost 280 million, Indonesia is the third-largest democracy worldwide. And it is a key partner for Germany in the Indo-Pacific region. This is particularly true at a time of global challenges, with the Russian war of aggression against Ukraine also affecting the global food supply and security architecture. Indonesia and Germany worked together with other countries to introduce the Uniting for Peace Resolution in the UN General Assembly and call for the UN Charter to be respected. In the Indo-Pacific region, Indonesia is a key figure within the ASEAN community of states, which has its Secretariat in the Indonesian capital Jakarta. Germany and the EU are working hard to enhance their cooperation with the ASEAN countries. Because stability in the region is important for security, the economy and trade in Europe, too. The common goal is therefore the strengthening of international law and multilateral cooperation.

A common agenda for climate and environment issues

Fighting the climate crisis is a priority of Germany’s G7 Presidency. Indonesia is one of the most biodiverse countries in the world. As an archipelago with over 17,500 islands, it plays a crucial role in environmental protection and climate change mitigation. At the same time, Indonesia is particularly affected by the impact of climate change, while also being one of the leading emitters of greenhouse gases and exporters of coal worldwide – and offering significant potential for renewable energies. The G7 states are therefore holding talks with Indonesia on an ambitious Just Energy Transition Partnership. Climate change mitigation has long been a key pillar of German-Indonesian development cooperation. Germany has provided around 2 billion euro for development cooperation since 2010. As part of the Green Infrastructure Initiative, loans worth up to 2.5 billion euro will be provided by 2025 for investments in climate-friendly infrastructure. The two countries’ common climate agenda also includes protection for Indonesia’s important mangrove forests. Like moors in Germany, mangroves can store carbon dioxide and thus contribute to climate change mitigation.


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