The Honourable minister of Foreign Affairs, International Cooperation and Gambians abroad, Dr Mamadou Tangara, on Tuesday 24 January 2023 held a bilateral meeting with his Indonesian counterpart, Her Excellency Retno Marsudi, at the Pancasila building, Jakarta.
H.E. Retno stated Indonesia’s support for The Gambia to host the 15th summit of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC).
She expressed hope that the OIC summit which will be held later this year can bring concrete results.
“Indonesia supports Gambia to be able to produce cooperation that can benefit the people of OIC member countries through cooperation to fulfill the right to education for Afghan women, as well as cooperation to strengthen capacity in agriculture,” Minister Retno said in a statement.
The minister expressed her readiness to provide protocol training and international trials to The Gambia in order to increase the country’s readiness to host the OIC summit.
Apart from discussing cooperation within the framework of the OIC project, the two foreign ministers also discussed different opportunities to increase bilateral cooperation.
“Indonesia wants to be part of the success story of African economic development,” Retno told FM Tangara during their discussion. However, the two ministers discussed the follow-up of several initiatives in the 2018 Indonesian-Africa forum and the 2019 Indonesia-Africa infrastructure Dialogue. Retno also conveyed Indonesia’s commitment in helping to renovate the Agricultural Rural Famers Training Center (ARFTC) in Jenoi, Gambia, which was built by the Indonesian government in 1996. With this renovation, ARFTC is expected to become a regional hub for families training in West Africa.
The two sides also discussed the preferential trade arrangement (PTA) plan between Indonesian government and the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS), which was proposed by Indonesia since 2017.
Dr Tangara expressed Gambia’s readiness to follow up on the PTA plan.
In the area of health, Foreign Minister Retno said that the COVID-19 vaccine made in Indonesia, IndoVac, is currently in the process of submitting an emergency use list (EUL) from the World Health Organization (WHO).
She concluded by conveying Indonesia’s desire to be more involved in health programs in The Gambia.
BANJUL, 26 January 2023