The Minister of Foreign Affairs made this statement at the opening of the 4th Ministerial Meeting on Archipelagic and Island States Forum (AIS Forum) in Bali on Tuesday, December 6, 2022.
The Indonesian Minister said that Indonesia and the archipelagic countries must maintain hope and optimism amid complex global challenges.
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The G20 Summit in Bali showed that world leaders could maintain the spirit of collaboration and put differences aside.
The Indonesian Minister emphasized two issues in the context of the AIS Forum cooperation:
First, the importance of collaboration in overcoming global challenges.
"The AIS Forum must become a platform for collaboration in overcoming global challenges, including through synergy with other initiatives," said the Indonesian Minister in a media release on Tuesday.
Second, the importance of strengthening unity to achieve common goals.
“A sustainable marine economy is a common goal that unites us. We all depend on the sea as a source of food and life, but at the same time, the sea also presents major challenges," said the Indonesian Minister.
Among these challenges are rising sea levels, marine debris, and over-exploitation of marine resources.
"If it is not managed properly, the archipelagic and island states will feel the biggest impact," said Minister Retno.
Initiated by Indonesia, the AIS Forum was formed in 2018 as a forum for cooperation between archipelagic and small island countries. The AIS Forum has 47 member countries and focuses on concrete cooperation for tackling climate change, blue economy, marine debris, and good maritime governance.
The 4th AIS Forum Ministerial Meeting was opened by the Coordinating Minister for Maritime Affairs and Investment, Luhut Binsar Panjaitan and the Minister for Foreign Affairs, Retno Marsudi. The Indonesian Minister of Maritime Affairs and Fisheries, Sakti Wahyu Trenggono led the meeting, which was attended by 22 countries and two international organizations.
The participants agreed on increasing cooperation and partnerships for several strategic programs in economic recovery and achieving the SDGs, especially related to maritime affairs, innovative financing, the blue economy, and advancing of the research for the sustainable management of marine resources.