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Thursday, 30 April 1987
Page: 2404

(Question No. 5222)

Mr Maher asked the Minister for Foreign Affairs, upon notice, on 23 March 1987:

Will an Australia-Indonesia Council be established to further relations between Indonesia and Australia.

Mr Hayden —The answer to the honourable member's question is as follows:

(1) Many of the activities that might be pursued under an Australia-Indonesia Council, or similar body, are already being carried out under other programs. In 1986-87, the Government is providing about $260,000 for cultural and youth exchanges with Indonesia under the Australia Abroad program and $123,000 for the Indonesia Project at the Australian National University. The Government also provides funds for several important Indonesian visitors each year to Australia under the Special Visitors Program, as well as for Australia-Indonesia Seminars, which bring together members of Parliament, business people, officials, academics and trade unionists from both countries.

(2) The Government recognises that there could be advantage in the Indonesian and Australian Governments considering, at an appropriate time, the establishment of an Indonesia-Australia Foundation to broaden co-operation and exchanges between the two countries. Such a proposal is not under active consideration at the present time.