Indonesia, Japan Boost Defense Ties With Wary Eye on China

Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and Indonesian President Joko Widodo review a guard of honor prior to their meeting at Abe’s official residence in Tokyo, March 23, 2015 (AP photo by Koji Sasahara).
Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and Indonesian President Joko Widodo review a guard of honor prior to their meeting at Abe’s official residence in Tokyo, March 23, 2015 (AP photo by Koji Sasahara).

Last month, Japan and Indonesia signed a defense pact that covers capacity building, peacekeeping and equipment development. In an email interview, Zachary Abuza, principal of Southeast Asia Analytics, discussed Japan-Indonesia relations. WPR: What is the nature of the Japan-Indonesia bilateral relationship, and what is the extent of political, economic and defense ties? Zachary Abuza: Indonesia and Japan have close economic ties, with bilateral trade now amounting to over $50 billion a year. Japan is a major investor in Indonesia’s manufacturing sector, and it is the single largest provider of development assistance—more than $40 billion since 1960. Indonesia is also seeking […]

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