18 Sep 2021
Due to the COVID-restrictions it was only in July that we could say farewell in person to Jesse during a social event in Wassenaar. Our distinguished patrons Joty ter Kulve, Wim van Eekelen and Bernard Bot were also present. Jesse was our first chairman at the beginning of INS. Under his able and stimulating leadership our organisation quickly managed to create for itself a highly visible and trusted position at the crossroads of the relations between Indonesia and the Netherlands. Together with the other board members I will do my best to live up to and build on the high standards set by Jesse.
In September last year we said farewell to His Excellency Ambassador Puja who proved to be a great supporter of INS. His successor, His Excellency Ambassador Mayerfas, arrived in November last year. Quickly after his arrival the board of INS was invited to his residence to meet the Ambassador who gave us a very warm welcome, taking great interest in the current and future activities of INS. We also exchanged views on possible joint initiatives to highlight areas of common interest between Indonesia and the Netherlands. INS organized together with the Indonesian Embassy a virtual introduction session for Ambassador Mayerfas , enabling him to meet the business patrons of INS. More in person meetings and seminars will follow in the coming months now that COVID-restrictions have been somewhat relaxed. One of these seminars will be devoted to climate change in the run up to UN-climate conference in Glasgow in November this year.
Needless to remark that INS and all its supporters are shocked by the terrible surge of the COVID-crisis in Indonesia. We share the grief of all those concerned by this terrible tragedy, those who lost their loved ones and who are trying to cope with this unspeakable human crisis. In close cooperation with our counterparts in Indonesia, INA Indonesia, we have been able to make a very modest contribution to the fight against COVID.
We are grateful for all the support we get for our activities from the Indonesian Embassy and from the Netherlands Embassy in Jakarta. Without their support and that of our patrons it would be difficult to organize the various activities.
No doubt we will have the opportunity in the coming period to organize events that highlight the breadth and depth of the relations between Indonesia and the Netherlands, be it from a geopolitical, economic or cultural angle with a special emphasis on the role that younger generations can play to underpin our special relationship and to address collectively the global challenges we face.
You will of course be informed about these upcoming events and we would be delighted to welcome you there.
Looking forward to meet you.