Roundtable Discussion Forging New Canada Indonesia Partnership
Indonesian Consulate in Vancouver in cooperation with The Center for International Governance Innovation (CIGI), Canada, held a roundtable discussion on 22 June 2016, on the theme “Forging the New Canada-Indonesia Partnership”. Ambassador Leonard J. Edwards, honorary member of CIGI and former Vice Minister of Foreign Minister of Canada 2007-2010, delivered his highlights as the main speaker.
The Discussion is attended by various representatives from BC Ministry of International Trade, Trade Commissioner of Canada’s Global Affairs, academics from University of British Columbia and Simon Fraser University, journalist, representatives from several large companies in BC and Indonesian Diaspora in Vancouver.
In her opening remarks, Indonesian Consul General in Vancouver extended her appreciation and gratitude to Ambassador Leonard J. Edwards and expected the roundtable discussion could disseminate understanding towards the related stakeholders concerning various potential cooperation that can be developed between Indonesia-Canada. Consul General also underlined the improved relation between Indonesia and Canada, in particular with BC Province, within the last two years, as reflected by the visit of BC Minister of International Trade and trade mission conveyed by Southeast Asia Business Council along with several Canada’s large companies to Indonesia during 2015. In return, there were visits from several Indonesian delegation to Vancouver in 2015, in particular during the event of Business Forum held by Indonesian Consulate General in Vancouver in cooperation with BC Ministry of International Trade, in November 2015.
Ambasador Leonard J. Edwards in the discussion, described that judging from the perspective of territorial geography, number of population and immense economic potential, Indonesia is a very influential country, both in term of regional as well as international. It is considered timely for Canada to give a bigger attention and to act “out of the box” to enhance diplomatic, security, governance and education relation with Indonesia.
During discussion session, there were several inputs from the participants, mainly revolve around the need for scholarship support from Canada’s education institutions to boost the number of Indonesian students in Canada; and also the need to amplify the introduction of Indonesian language and culture. Participants also highlighted the need for capacity building in health sector to pave the way for Indonesian medical skilled worker to Canada; the need for innovative breakthrough in Canada’s immigration administration in terms of getting Canadian visa. The representative of Indonesian diaspora also underlined the funding scheme that would allow the diaspora to play a greater role in driving the improvement of the bilateral relation between two countries.