Bogor: Malaysian Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad, during a visit to Indonesia, met President Joko Widodo at the Bogor Palace to discuss issues related to governance, corruption eradication, connectivity, border settlement, and politics.
"I have already discussed with him and the delegation. In essence, we share the same commitment to ensure good governance, which is about eradication of corruption, and on the issue of the importance of connectivity and border-related settlements. We will discuss it one-by-one at the ministerial-level forums," President Joko Widodo (Jokowi) noted during a joint press statement with Prime Minister Mahathir here on Friday.
The president believes that both countries will be able to reap the benefits of cooperation and be able to solve border issues.
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He also revealed that at the meeting, Prime Minister Mahathir made assurance of offering protection to Indonesian workers staying in Malaysia.
"We also spoke about the construction of schools for Indonesian children in Malaysia," he stated.
He remarked that Indonesia and Malaysia also shared the same commitment on prioritizing settlement through dialog based on international laws.
Prime Minister Mahathir is optimistic that friendship and cooperation between Indonesia and Malaysia would increase due to its several advantages in the fields of politics and economics and also relations between nations.
"We face the same problem, for instance, oil and palm oil exports. We are threatened by Europe, and we need to fight them together," he pointed out.
Indonesia and Malaysia need to jointly fight their campaign that states entrepreneurs obtain palm oil from plantations in forest areas and in the process fail to protect the environment.
"It is not true at all," he remarked.
The Malaysian prime minister further said that palm oil is competing with petroleum, so it concerns economic and financial issues rather than environmental ones.
Speaking in connection with education for children of migrant workers, the Malaysian prime minister vowed to guarantee their education.
"Children of migrants need to be educated. There are some schools in our peninsula, but in Sabah Sarawak, there are no schools for Indonesian children to study. We will fix this problem soon," he noted.
Moreover, for border issues, Mahathir agreed to an approach to resolve the overlapping issue of Malaysia and Indonesia.
"We have agreed on an approach to handle this issue. We need to accept that cooperation exists between Indonesia and Malaysia, as the latter is cooperating with Thailand where we have a joint development area," he explained.
Mahathir also remarked that President Jokowi's visit in 2015 was related to the possibility of building a Malaysian-Indonesian train that may be operated throughout the Association of Southeast Asian Nations.
"For certain reasons, we could not continue it. However, now, I visit this country to continue to address that issue," he remarked.
The Malaysian prime minister also revealed that Indonesia and Malaysia faced similar problems in terms of domestic political issues.
We also discussed about our domestic politics, and that the problems faced in Indonesia are bigger than those in Malaysia. Of course we are speaking about our ways to deal with political problems in this democracy, he added.