Jokowi Wants Indonesian Diaspora to Help with Exports

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  • President Joko Widodo delivers a welcome speech when meeting hundreds of Indonesian diaspora in at Auditorium Palace of Fine Arts, San Francisco, on February 16, 2016.

    President Joko Widodo delivers a welcome speech when meeting hundreds of Indonesian diaspora in at Auditorium Palace of Fine Arts, San Francisco, on February 16, 2016.

    TEMPO.CO, Jakarta - President Joko Widodo gives his attention to the Indonesian diaspora. Foreign Minister Retno Marsudi said for that the president sees the existence of diaspora as an asset to the state.

    "The President hopes the Indonesian diaspora can work together to increase exports," Retno said at the Presidential Palace in Jakarta, Monday.

    The minister said that the government wants to cooperate with the diaspora in Mexico to open coal export opportunities. Through the Indonesian Embassy in Mexico, Retno said, the government can take use the diaspora network that engaged in the mining sector.

    "It would be good to synergize with diasporas; it will make it easier for us to open market opportunities," said Minister Retno.

    She added that the government also wants to establish connectivity between diasporas; for them to form a network and synergize to attract more investors—especially now that Indonesia has an investment grade with BBB- or stable outlook.

    This afternoon, President Jokowi received a number of diasporas at the State Palace, with Foreign Minister Retno Marsudi also in attendance.

    Last Saturday, the Indonesian diaspora held a meeting in Jakarta, with former US President Barack Obama, who was on vacation in Indonesia, attending. 

    Widodo's plan is well received by Indonesians living abroad. "What we want to do is help the government," said Monique Patrisia, an Indonesian living abroad. 

    ADITYA BUDIMAN