The U.S.-Indonesia Comprehensive Partnership, officially launched by President Barack Obama and President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono in November 2010, is a long-term commitment to elevate bilateral relations by enhancing cooperation and upgrading strategic consultations on key bilateral, regional, and global issues. Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton and Foreign Minister Marty Natalegawa co-chair an annual Joint Commission of the U.S.-Indonesia Comprehensive Partnership. Secretary Clinton and Foreign Minister Natalegawa held the inaugural session of the Joint Commission in September 2010 in Washington, D.C., and the second meeting will take place July 24 in Bali, Indonesia.
Cooperation under the Partnership is outlined in a Plan of Action consisting of three pillars: Under the political and security pillar, we are working together to strengthen bilateral defense and security cooperation through our June 2010 Defense Framework Arrangement and to combat non-traditional challenges to regional security. Under the economic and development pillar, we are seeking expanded trade and further reduction of trade barriers; broadened development cooperation; collaboration on energy policy and renewable energy development; and progress on climate and environment challenges. Under the socio-cultural/educational/science and technology pillar, we are expanding academic exchanges; launching a five-year effort to improve the quality of higher education in Indonesia; expanding scientific and research linkages; and promoting dialogues that will advance peace, tolerance, and respect for diversity.
Six working groups have been charged with coordinating strategies and highlighting policy priorities under the Plan of Action. These are existing forums on energy, security, and trade and investment as well as newly created groups on democracy and civil society, education, and climate and environment. At the same time, the Partnership is much more than the sum of its working groups and comprises expanding senior level visits; military exercises; cooperation on the environment; educational exchanges; and the development of institutional relationships, not only at the government level, but also between civil society, academia, and business. Pursuant to the Partnership, the two governments are developing habits of consultation on key international issues, such as international economic challenges in the G-20, climate change, and diplomatic questions. We expect to add other high-level dialogues as we further develop the Comprehensive Partnership.