Speech of President Rodrigo Roa Duterte during the Joint Press Statement with Indonesian President Joki Widodo
Istana Merdeka, Jakarta, Indonesia
09 September 2016
Thank you, President.

Your Excellency. Again, I express gratitude for your warm welcome and the exceptional arrangements accorded to me and my delegation during my visit to Indonesia.

I am very pleased and honored to be in Jakarta.

The Philippines considers its relations with Indonesia as among the most important. And today, we have taken steps to ensure that these ties remain vibrant and will gain greater depth and new dimensions.

My meeting with President Widodo was very productive and fruitful. We discussed ways of strengthening existing bilateral cooperation and identified new areas of partnership, including maritime security and in law enforcement.

We agreed to encourage the earliest and effective implementation of cooperative framework to address security issues, in what is really the most problem of the two countries. We expressed commitment to take all necessary steps to ensure security in the Sulu Sea and maritime areas of common concern.

As two of the largest archipelagos in the world, we recognized the value of maritime cooperation and we will restore in this area particularly in our Luzon archipelago and of course arrangements in aquatic resources expertise and the shipbuilding industry.

We also expressed serious concern over recent developments in the region, including in the South China Sea. We called on parties to respect the rule of law and welcomed the support of partners in efforts to ensure the security and stability in the region, especially in the peaceful settlement of disputes, in accordance with international law.

We understand that peace is a necessary condition for growth and progress. And I expressed appreciation for Indonesia’s abiding support to the Philippine Government as we move forward with our peace processes.

We also recognized the value of connectivity in spurring and sustaining growth in our countries. We discussed ways to boost air and sea connectivity and how enhanced trade and people-to-people exchanges that can improve the lives, particularly in the area of the BIMP-EAGA.

Both sides likewise viewed with grave concern the threat of terrorism and violent extremism. We agreed to work together to run, arrest and prosecute all those who seek to sow fear and terror in our societies.

We share the deep concern over the trade in illicit and illegal drugs and its impact on our societies. We will seek ways to intensify cooperation in the campaign against this menace. We will do our part in contributing to the aim of a drug-free ASEAN community.

With the Philippines chairmanship of ASEAN in 2017, I am glad to hear President Widodo’s support for the Philippines. I look forward to working closely with him on regional initiatives that will strengthen ASEAN.

Certainly, the ties that bind the Philippines and Indonesia are long and enduring. The Philippines holds its relations with Indonesia as one that is truly valued.

Indonesia is not only a friend but a brother. Indonesia is assured of the Philippines’ commitment to grow these relations in the years to come.

I look forward to reciprocating President Widodo’s hospitality when he visits the Philippines at a mutually convenient time. I look forward to working closely with my friend and brother.

And may I add to the—just a few minutes—to the Mr. President. In 1972, there was this problem of oil, and there was almost a crisis, and there was rationing of fuel all over, including my country, the Philippines.

I was still a student at that time when I read the assurance of the Indonesian government: that not to worry if no oil would get to us by way of the Middle East. And they said that, “You Filipinos will be supported by the Indonesians. You will have your oil and gasoline.”

For that I, as a vignette in life, to just inform how Indonesians has treated us like a big brother and we will continue to maintain this valued friendship, Mr. President.

Thank you and I thanked the Indonesians. (applause)