A. Short History of Bilateral Relations
The relation between Indonesia and Belgium began since Belgium’s active involvement as a member of the Three State Commission together with Australia and the United States of America in 1947 to resolve dispute between Indonesia and the Netherlands concerning Indonesia’s sovereignty. Since the establishment of the Indonesian Embassy in Brussels in 1949, Indonesia and Belgium have been making use of the opportunity to enhance closer ties between the two countries.
B. Cooperation and Political Relations
The Government of Belgium has awarded several medals of Honor to Indonesian nationals, among others are the “Commandeur de l’Ordre de Leopold” awarded to the vice President of Indonesia, Drs. H. Muhammad Jusuf Kalla and the “Officier de l’Ordre de Leopold” awarded to the Head of Indonesian Chamber of Commerce, Mohamad Hidayat, in Brussels on 6 February 2009.
C. Economic Cooperation, Trade and Investments
The total value of trade between Indonesia and Belgium in 2008 was 1.28 billion Euros (increased 17.99% of the total trade volume than that of 2007 which was 1.19 billion Euros). Indonesia’s main export products to Belgium consists of machinery equipments, wood products, furniture products, footwear, clothing, pearls, textile and textile products, leather products, fishery products and tobacco. In 2008, Belgium’s investment to Indonesia was 16,6 million Euro in 2 (two) projects (in 2007, Belgium’s investment was 2,64 million Euro for 4 (four) projects).
The total Belgium’s investment volume to Indonesia since 1990-2007 is worth 263 million Euro in 49 projects. Generally, Belgium’s investment in Indonesia is concentrated in the fields of plantations, tiles and glass, steel, pharmacy, garment and textile. Prince Phillipe’s visit to Indonesia on November 2008 managed to widen the opportunity to enhance and advance various cooperation in terms of trade, investments and technical cooperations in Indonesia as well as the signing of several business arrangements between Indonesia and Belgium, which consists of purchasing contracts, joint venture as well as an MoU on education between the Kofi Annan Business School Foundation (represented by PA International) with Universitas Indonesia.