3 March 2020 – State visit and economic mission to Indonesia: speech of Jesse Kuijper, Chair of INS, during pre-event in Wassenaar

07 Mar 2020

On 3 March 2020 in Kasteel Wittenburg, Wassenaar, the Embassy of the Republic of Indonesia organized a pre-event to familiarize the business delegations, accompanying the state visit of the King of the Netherlands, with the potentials Indonesia has to offer. After the lunch the Ambassador of Indonesia, the President of VNO-NCW and the Chair of INS successively delivered a speech. Read here the text spoken by Jesse Kuijper.

Your Excellency, honoured guests, dear participants of the Royal trade mission to Indonesia!

I am very honoured to speak here as chairman of the Indonesia Nederland Society.

The society was founded almost eight years ago by the initiative of a group of prominent dutch politicians, businessmen and various heads of organisations together with the board of the foundation Friends of Linggarjati.

Linggarjati was the place where direct after WW II the negotiations between the Indonesians and the Dutch started. Although the result was not ratified by both countries, it is considered the first time that the Indonesians operated independently on international level and therefore Linggarjati was an historical landmark in the bilateral relationship as well in the history of the Republic of Indonesia.

The common driver of the founders of INS was that the time had come to look with a new perspective from the Netherlands to a –  already called the NEW Indonesia. ‘To throw away our old glasses’ as former ambassador to the Netherlands and current minister of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Indonesia Mrs Retno Marsudi at that time already proclaimed.

At that time our perspective was a bit outdated, of course in general, and we ran the risk of missing out becoming a true partner in the further development of this great country.

A lot has changed since then.

Today I stand here in front of the third trade mission since 2012, has our prime minister visited already three times Indonesia, was President Joko Widodo already in the Netherlands and now our King and Queen will head the largest trade mission so far next week.

The figures are stunning, yet those of you that have visited Indonesia before or have done business already know that Indonesia is not an easy to entry market.

Trust and facetime are important drivers for a long and fruitful relationship with an Indonesian counterpart. Relationships are built slowly and carefully, but last long. Our shared past has created a larger understanding at both sides that often contributes to a better relationships.

Indonesia is one of the fastest growing economies in the world combining this growth with better healthcare, education and income for many Indonesians. There is still a lot to be done, therefore the general motto is to look at the future, not too much at the past, and make things better for everyone.

I wish you all a very successful mission to Indonesia. Whether it is the continuation of an existing relation or your first time, I am sure you will be able to make the best out of your visit. If it’s your first, be sure it will be one of many.

Hopefully we can look back in a few years and conclude this mission and it participants had a substantial positive contribution to the so precious Indonesian-Dutch relationship.

My fellow board members Andhika Rutten, Aljosja van Dorssen, Rennie Roos and Frits Blessing and myself will be joining you in Jakarta.

Have a safe and fruitful journey to your New Indonesia!

Terima kasih