Thursday, June 12, 2008

Indonesia to examine Australian PM's Asia-Pacific plan

source: Agence France-Presse - 6/6/2008 6:53 AM GMTvia MSN Malaysia News
Indonesia is "really keen" to examine an ambitious plan by Australian Prime Minister Kevin Rudd to create a European Union-style grouping for the Asia-Pacific, an official said Friday.
Government officials in Australia's closest neighbour said they would discuss the proposal with Rudd when he makes his first prime ministerial visit to Jakarta to meet President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono next week.
"We're following the issue with interest. We are really keen to study the issue further," foreign ministry spokesman Teuku Faizasyah said.
"I suppose the visit of PM Rudd next week to Indonesia will be an occasion for us to have a clear reference of what exactly (is) the vision of his statement," Faizasyah said.
Yudhoyono spokesman Dino Patti Djalal confirmed Jakarta was looking closely at the proposal and would discuss it when the leaders meet during Rudd's June 12-14 visit.
"We are actively reading the idea proposed by the prime minister and we will look forward to hearing more about it when the president meets him in mid-June," he said.
Rudd said Thursday an Asia-Pacific Community including the massive economies of China, India, the United States and Japan could be established by 2020.
A fluent Mandarin speaker and ardent Sinophile, the Labor prime minister has made closer engagement with Asia a foreign policy priority since his election last November.

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