Indonesia and Japan improve military ties

Indonesia and Japan have agreed that the two Asian powers must engage in stronger cooperation, including in the military sector, to contribute to regional security particularly in the Pacific area, which has been tense due to prolonged territorial disputes.

The commitment was made by President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono and Japan Ground Self-Defense Force (JGSDF) commander Gen. Eiji Kimizuka when the two met at Yudhoyono’s office in Jakarta on Tuesday. “The two countries agree that Indonesian-Japanese ties are very good, robust and improving, especially in the sectors of defense and military,” Yudhoyono said upon welcoming his Japanese guests.

Indonesia Will Have the Fastest Growing Defence Budget in Asia Pacific Over The Next Five Years

Global Defence Spending is down, but Asia’s spending is up. That is according to the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI), which released the latest edition of its annual measure of military expenditure worldwide for 2014. SIPRI reported that, in 2014, global military spending dropped slightly by 0.4 percent in real terms, despite the growing instability and conflict in the Ukraine.

Jokowi Spells Out Vision for Indonesia’s “Global Maritime Nexus”

The economic and security conundrum posed by Indonesia’s archipelagic geography is not new. The combination of 17,000 islands with an underfunded navy and poor port infrastructure results in widespread piracy, illegal fishing, and smuggling. The extraordinarily high costs of transporting goods domestically makes it cheaper for Indonesians to consume foreign goods than domestic ones, and makes the nation function more as a collection of weakly integrated economies than as a unified market.

Successive Indonesian leaders have struggled with these economic and security challenges. Indonesia’s new president, Joko “Jokowi” Widodo, wants to tackle them and embrace Indonesia’s geography as an asset, not a disadvantage. Maritime policy will be a top priority for Jokowi’s first few years in office, which offers the United States and other partners opportunities for cooperation with Indonesia on maritime security.

Indonesia sets new military target

JAKARTA - Indonesian Defense Minister Purnomo Yusgiantoro said on Tuesday that the country's military is expected to meet a new power level, inscripting in presidential decree as Minimum Essential Force (MEF), within two years.

"After seeing what are displayed here, I am optimistic that we can settle the military improvement and restructuring jobs within two years as mandated by the existing law," Purnomo said on the sidelines of an exhibition displaying advancement of national defense industry in the military headquarters here.

Indonesia, Spain sign MoU on military cooperation

Indonesian and Spanish defense ministers signed here on Wednesday a memorandum of understanding ( MoU) to expand military cooperation between the two countries that has been discussed since 2007.

The military cooperation will involve mitigation of the impact of natural disasters, according to the MoU.

"They demonstrated their sincere readiness in 2004 when they directly came here from faraway place to help us in tackling the impact of the devastating tsunami in Aceh," Indonesian Defense Minister Purnomo Yusgiantoro said after signing the MoU with his Spanish counterpart Pedro Morenes Eulate.

Ryamizard Pushing for Indonesian Defense Budget Increase, Citing Shortfall

Jakarta. Defense Minister Ryamizard Ryacudu said on Thursday that the government was committed to boosting the portion of defense spending up to 1.5 percent of Indonesia’s state budget, almost double the current level.

Ryamizard said the Rp 83 trillion ($6.8 billion) allotted this year, although an increase from figures appropriated in previous years, represented only 0.8 percent of the total state budget.

Indonesia to Buy More Russian Jet Fighters, Patrol Ships

Indonesia plans to buy more than a dozen Russian Sukhoi fighter jets and domestically made, missile-equipped patrol ships as part of a $15 billion five-year campaign to modernize its military, defense officials said on Wednesday.

Southeast Asia’s largest economy has sharply increased its defense budget since 2010 as the military looks to bolster its capacity to protect shipping lanes, ports and maritime boundaries.

Indonesian military wants more Black Hawks

The Indonesian military is planning to acquire more firepower, with around $1.5 billion budgeted for missiles and helicopter gunships.

Defence force chief of staff General Pramono Edhie Wibowo said the plans inclued orders for 24 more Bell helicopters.

He said Indonesia was also negotiating to get another 20 Sikorsky Black Hawks.

Indonesia to develop defense systems

Indonesia is set to modernize its primary defense systems (alutsista) in order to strengthen the country's defense capabilities.

In a limited meeting held at the Presidential Office in Jakarta on Monday, President Joko "Jokowi" Widodo said Indonesia’s current defense budget amounted to 1.1 percent of the country’s gross domestic product (GDP), slightly up from previous allocations of 0.89 percent of GDP in 2015 and 0.79 percent in 2014.

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