UK steps up cooperation with Southeast Asian nations hinh anh 1Secretary of State for Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Affairs of the UK Dominic Raab (L) and Indonesian Foreign Minister Retno Marsudi (Photo: EPA)
Jakarta (VNA) – Secretary of State for Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Affairs of the United Kingdom Dominic Raab is on a visit to Indonesia and Brunei on April 7-9 to consolidate trade and security ties as well as promote cooperation in addressing global challenges with the two nations.

He met Indonesian President Joko Widodo and Foreign Minister Retno Marsudi to discuss the UK – Indonesia trade partnership, valued 3.75 billion USD each year.

The two foreign ministers clinched a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on anti-terrorism cooperation.

According to Marsudi, both sides agreed to boost collaboration across healthcare, enhance defence cooperation, and speed up economic recovery by adding ten cooperative priorities, including wood and agricultural products.

A MoU on the UK – Indonesia inter-committee on economy and trade will be signed on April 7 to intensify the implementation of those cooperative priorities.

In an official announcement on April 7, Marsudi said she voiced Indonesia’s concern over the UK’s new bill, which requires accountability of several agricultural products such as palm oil, cocoa and rubber, expressing her hope that both nation can work together to surmount the issue.

They also discussed international issues.

Raab also met with ASEAN Secretary-General Dato Lim Jock Hoi as the UK wants to enhance relations with this regional bloc.

Following the Indonesia visit, Raab is scheduled to visit Brunei to attend several high-level meetings on April 8, discussing trade, climate change and security issues.

He will pay a courtesy visit to the Sultan of Brunei before meeting with Foreign Minister Dato Erywan.

The UK wants to join the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP), in which Brunei and many other ASEAN states are members.

He will also attend the second UK – ASEAN ministerial dialogue before returning London.

The UK sees the Indo-Pacific significant in its foreign strategy./.