CANBERRA, Australia (AP) — Business travel for Indonesians to Australia will be made easier in a bid to boost the economic partnership between the two countries following a deal struck on Tuesday between their leaders.
Australian Prime Minister Anthony Albanese and Indonesian President Joko Widodo agreed on visa changes, climate initiative funding and education partnerships during talks at Sydney’s Taronga Zoo.
Albanese announced Indonesians will be able to access extended business visas for Australia, increasing from three to five years, while Indonesian e-passport holders will be prioritised. Indonesians will also be able to access a frequent traveler visa.
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“This offers a 10-year visa validity making an enormous difference and removing bureaucratic impediments to our closer relationship,” Albanese said. “Today our relationship shifts up another gear, our countries continue to choose to draw closer together.”
Albanese said Indonesia would play a critical role in boosting the success of the Indo-Pacific region.
Widodo, who is on a three-day visit to Australia, said the two countries needed to work together on emissions reduction and developing batteries for electric vehicles. Indonesia has been looking at developing electric vehicle infrastructure across the country.
“We want the Indo-Pacific to become a stable and peaceful region that focuses on collaboration and concrete cooperation,” he said.
Widodo also urged Australian private sector companies to work on the construction of Indonesia’s new capital city located on Borneo island.
Albanese announced a new package to support the development of the city, with Australia’s National Capital Authority to provide cooperation to Indonesia.
Widodo’s visit comes as the federal government is expected to finalise its Southeast Asia economic strategy to 2040 in the coming weeks.