President Ferdinand R. Marcos Jr. and Indonesian President Joko Widodo agreed to enhance the cooperation on political and security matters of the two countries.

“As immediate neighbors and fellow archipelagic states, the Philippines and Indonesia agreed to continue our cooperation on political and security matters, noting the recently concluded Joint Commission for Bilateral Cooperation (JCBC) headed by our respected foreign ministers,” President Marcos said.

The President made the remarks during the Leaders’ Statement with President Widodo, who is in the Philippines for this three-day official visit to the country.

“Our shared historic roots are deep, and thank you to our close kinship and our cultural ties, that we continue to promote, and we continue to allow to prosper, the Philippines and Indonesia enjoy this affinity for one another,” President Marcos added.

The JCBC is the primary dialogue mechanism between the Philippines and Indonesia to review accomplishments on mutual collaboration initiatives, exchange views on issues of mutual interest, and consider plans for enhancing cooperation.

One of such initiatives is the progress in the implementation of the bilateral priorities in the Philippines-Indonesia Plan of Action 2022-2027, which they signed on the sidelines of the State Visit by President Marcos to the Republic of Indonesia in September 2022. The Plan of Action covers multifaceted cooperation in political and security; border issues; regional and global issues; economic cooperation; sociocultural and people-to-people exchange; and judicial and consular matters between the Philippines and Indonesia.

In an earlier press conference, Foreign Affairs Secretary Enrique Manalo said both countries committed to continue implementing the Plan of Action towards further elevating our bilateral relations to new heights, especially with the marking of the 75th Anniversary of Philippines-Indonesia Diplomatic Relations this year.

As a result of the successful ties between the Philippines and Indonesia, President Marcos and President Widodo witnessed the signing of the memorandum of understanding on the Cooperation in the Field of Energy.

President Marcos said the MOU will create a new synergy between the Philippines and Indonesia as the two countries cooperate to achieve energy security.

The President also said another MOU between the Philippines and Indonesia on Science and Technology “is nearing the completion phase as well.”

For his part, President Widodo, in his Statement, said both countries agreed to strengthen border cooperation as he noted the importance of the revisions of the Border Patrol Agreement and Border Crossing Agreement, the Settlement of Continental Shelf Boundaries, and the strengthening of defense cooperation including defense equipment.