Sweden’s King Carl XVI Gustaf (centre) and Queen Silvia (dressing in red) visit Bandung city, West Java province. (Photo: EPA/VNA)

Jakarta (VNA)
– Sweden’s King Carl XVI Gustaf and Queen Silvia visited Indonesia from May 22-24 to boost multi-faceted cooperation with the Southeast Asian nation.

This was the first visit to the country by Swedish monarchs in 65 years of diplomatic ties between the two nations. On the occasion, the two sides inked three agreements on visa waivers for diplomatic and official passport holders, transportation and creative industries.

The Swedish king was accompanied by representatives from 35 leading companies to attend Indonesia-Sweden Executive Business Forum and explore cooperation with Indonesian partners.

The two countries have high potential for collaboration in infrastructure and energy.

Indonesia showed interest in education, research and forestry cooperation, King Gustaf said, adding that although Sweden’s forests only make up one percent of the world’s trade forest areas, the country has become a leading forestry exporter.

Indonesian President Joko Widodo took the occasion to present the Indonesian Adipurna Star to his guest. After, King Gustaf conferred the Order of Seraphim to the Indonesian leader.

The Southeast Asian country is home to 80 Swedish companies, which employ about 2,000 local workers. The figures are expected to increase after the Swedish monarchs’ visit.

The visit would also open opportunities for Indonesian products like coffee and chocolate to penetrate the Swedish market.

Statistics from the Indonesian Ministry of Trade showed that two-way trade fell from 1.45 million USD in 2012 to 670,000 USD in 2015. Sweden’s investment in Indonesia hit 12.4 million USD in the past five years.-VNA