Sharing Experiences with the Baltic Sea: Indonesia’s Chance of Marine Cooperation with Sweden

By: Edi Suharto, Fahmi J.M., Nuradi Noeri, Rukmini Tri Setiati, Yuni Suryati.

The sea has always played an important role in Sweden, which has been a seafaring nation for over a thousand years. Even today, shipping represents nearly 90 percent of trade. A large part Sweden is surrounded by water, and this country has the longest coastline in Europe. Swedish maritime policy is based on the view that its seas are an indispensable resource. Preserving this resource will require a holistic approach to how we use the seas and action to preserve or restore marine ecosystem.

In the direction of Swedish maritime policy, resources of the sea and coastal areas are to be used in sustainable way so that ecosystem are maintained, while enabling sea-related industries to develop, grow and contribute to strengthen Sweden’s competitiveness. Sea related industrial policy place a special focus on environmental issues. The climate change and environmental challenges can be used as lever for greater sustainable growth, new jobs and more export. For the Swedish Government, the marine environment is the highest priority environment issue next to climate change.

Sustainable development is an overarching goal that means all political decisions have to take account of long term economic, social and environment impacts. This is also particularly applicable to maritime policy. The sea-related national environmental quality objectives are given starting points for Swedish maritime policy.

Sweden will be proactive and work strategically to strengthen international cooperation and marine resources issues. Sweden government sees that sea is something we share, this why international cooperation is crucial for the future of the sea. Swedish government allocated special budget for the marine restoration, research and marine environmental improvement.

Indonesia and Sweden have maintained their close relationship since many years. Sweden is one of Indonesia’s trading partners in Europe. Sweden is one of the countries in Europe that has successful experiences and advance technology in producing renewable energy. More than half of Sweden’s energy need is supplying by the renewable energy. Indonesian Embassy in Stockholm has promoted several meeting between related institution of Indonesia and Sweden in establishing cooperation to develop renewable energy in Indonesia.

A Sweden’s SAAB and PT Pelindo II have agreed to cooperate in managing the modernization of Tanjung Priok port in 2015. The Indonesian Embassy in Stockholm noted that the Sweden government have offered several cooperation in developing maritime infrastructure for other purposes such as deep sea port. This is one of chances of maritime cooperation that can be strengthening Indonesian maritime infrastructure.

Another cooperation between both countries is the joint production of patrol ship by SAAB and PT Lundin of Indonesia. These ship are belong to Indonesia’s navy in renewing its military equipment.

Sweden also proposed a cooperation in developing Indonesia’s strategic industries with PT Pindad, PT. PAL and PT. Dirgantara Indonesia. Both sides have finalized the umbrella agreement on this cooperation last August in Stockholm. One of the cooperation in the said agreement is the selling of Sweden’s made jet fighter Gripen JAS-39 to Indonesia. The aircrafts are equipped with the most advanced technology in early warning and surveillance system that called as Global Eye. This aircraft can be used as part of Indonesia’s efforts in securing its maritime territory such as combating IUU fishing and piracy.

To improve Indonesia’s maritime capacity and in order to better preserve our maritime culture, the following policy options are relevant to be considered:

  1. Utilizing Sweden expertise and resources to improve our human resources capability in maritime sectors such as maritime security, maritime safety and marine resources preservation.
  2. Attracting more Swedish investment for maritime infrastructure such as deep sea ports. The cooperation between SAAB and PT. Pelindo II could be a success story to invite other project of cooperation.
  3. Utilizing Sweden’s offer in strengthening our surveillance capacity to safeguard our maritime territory.
  4. Promoting University to University cooperation between World Maritime University of Sweden with Hassanudin University of Makasar, Indonesia to accelerate maritime program study in Indonesia.

To conclude with, we would like to recommend the 4th option which is promoting University to University cooperation between World Maritime University of Sweden with Hassanudin University of Makasar, Indonesia to accelerate maritime program study in Indonesia. This measure is considered to be the most feasible cooperation, and in the long run it could contribute to strengthen our maritime culture.

Jakarta, 19 September 2016

 

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