Obama : RI new rising economic power

Antara News, Tuesday, November 9, 2010 22:26 WIB

U.S. President Barack Obama shakes hands with Indonesia's President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono alongside first ladies Michelle Obama (L) and Kristiani Herawati at an arrival ceremony at Istana Merdeka in Jakarta, November 9, 2010. (Xinhua/Reuters Photo)

Jakarta (ANTARA News) - Visiting US President Barack Obama said he believed Indonesia was a new rising economic power in the region as well as in the world.

"I believe Indonesia is not only a rising regional power but also a global power," he said at the opening of a bilateral meeting between the two countries` governments at Merdeka Palace here on Tuesday evening.

The meeting was attended by a number of ministers and officials concerned of the two countries.

President Obama said he had already held talks several times with President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono. He said he had already had wonderful talks with President Yudhyono.

Obama said he was grateful he could visit Indonesia which would be for the finalization of a comprehensive partnership agreement between the two countries.

On the occasion President Yudhoyono expressed hope that the cooperation between the two countries could be expanded and deepened so that the two countries could further progress.

It was a closed-door meeting but journalists were allowed to cover its opening.

Among the Indonesian cabinet ministers attending the meeting were Coordinating Minister for Economic Affairs Hatta Radjasa, Coordinating Minister for Political, Security and Legal Affairs Djoko Suyanto, Minister/State Secretary Sudi Silalahi, Education Minister M Nuh and Trade Minister Marie Elka Pangestu.

On the US side the officials attending the meeting were Senior Advisor Valerie Jarrett, Press Secretary Robert Gibbs and several other officials.

Before the large-format meeting President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono and President Barack Obama held a private meeting at the Merdeka Palace`s Jepara Room.

The meeting lasted almost half an hour and was held soon after President Obama arrived at the palace.

President Obama flanked by First Lady Michelle Obama were welcomed upon arrival at the Merdeka Palace at 5pm by President Yudhoyono and First Lady Ani Yudhoyono.

The two leaders greeted each other warmly and thereafter moved to the palace`s verandah for an official welcome where the two countries` national anthems were played.

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