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Joint Ministerial Statement.

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The Joint Commission has considered inter-sessionally further arrangements and activities under the Australia Indonesia Partnership for Reconstruction and Development (AIPRD).1

The Joint Commission welcomed progress to date on the implementation of the activities announced at the 17 March 2005 Joint Commission meeting.

The Joint Commission welcomed the cooperation between Australia and Indonesia in the implementation of the AIPRD, including the close cooperation of Australian officials with the Indonesian National Development Planning Board (BAPPENAS) and Australia’s assistance with the establishment of the Aceh and Nias Rehabilitation and Reconstruction Agency.

Ministers underlined the important role the Partnership has already played in promoting bilateral cooperation on emergency management and response, as demonstrated through the two countries’ cooperation in response to the 28 March Nias Earthquake. Ministers expressed again their heartfelt condolences to the families of those Indonesians killed in the Nias earthquake and the nine Australians killed in the 2 April Sea King accident on Nias.

1 Membership of the AIPRD Joint Commission includes, from the Australian side, the Hon Alexander Downer MP, Minister for Foreign Affairs, and the Hon Peter Costello MP, Treasurer; and from the Indonesian side, HE Dr Hassan Wirajuda, Minister for Foreign Affairs; HE Dr Jusuf Anwar, Minister for Finance; and HE Dr Sri Mulyani Indrawati, State Minister of National Development Planning and Chair of the National Planning Board (BAPPENAS).

New Partnership Activities

The Joint Commission noted the announcement on 4 April 2005 by Prime Minister Howard and President Yudhoyono that Australia would fund up to 600 new Australian Partnership Scholarships for Indonesian students to undertake post-graduate study at Australian tertiary institutions, in particular in the fields of economic governance, public sector management and education. The cost of the Australian Partnership Scholarship program is estimated at $78 million. The first intake of Australian Partnership Scholars has already been selected for English language training prior to commencing their studies in 2006.

The Joint Commission has agreed to the following additional programs to advance reconstruction and development in Aceh and throughout Indonesia:

• Expansion of the agreed Aceh Rehabilitation Program (by $30 million to a total

of $80 million) to enable additional health and education construction work, including rebuilding and repair of national and Islamic schools, selected sub-district education offices and health worker training academies, selected district health offices and training centres.

• Aceh Community Infrastructure program ($25 million) will help restore

community life and activity and assist displaced Acehnese to return to their villages and begin rebuilding. Activities will include: restoring key public buildings, such as community centres, central to assisting the return of displaced people and the re-establishment of government services at the community and sub-district level; restoring community-level water supply, electricity and social support mechanisms; and supporting local economic activity through rehabilitation of markets and market access.

• Aceh Rural Livelihoods (Water Resources and Aquaculture) program ($5

million) aimed at income generation and establishment of sustainable livelihoods. The earthquake and tsunami caused permanent changes to the coastal geology of Aceh, affecting the livelihoods of coastal and fishing communities. This program will provide critical information on changes to underground and surface water resources to guide reconstruction work and resumed agricultural activities. The program will assist the redevelopment of aquaculture through technical and financial assistance to small-scale hatcheries.

• Aceh Tertiary Education and Training program ($3 million) will enhance the

capacity of university lecturers to teach, supervise and research, and facilitate the production of the trained graduates vitally important for Aceh’s effective rehabilitation. The program will assist with the revitalisation of the Educational Research and Training Institute located at the Universitas Syiah Kuala in Banda Aceh, which provides lecturer training to a number of tertiary institutions in Aceh.

• Small-holder Agribusiness Development initiative ($25 million) to assist

agribusiness policy and regulatory frameworks and promote practices for efficient production, value-adding and delivery of high-value products, such as horticulture, livestock and aquaculture to domestic and export markets. The program will assist Indonesian policymakers, industry and small-holder farmers to enhance incomes, access improved technologies, adopt improved business processes, and identify

and address critical links in the supply chain, such as market access, finance and infrastructure.

Future Activities

The Joint Commission will continue to consider activities for funding under the Partnership.

Australian and Indonesian Government representatives are discussing proposals to meet urgent requirements for mapping, revitalisation of the construction industry, and the facilitation of housing reconstruction in Aceh. Ministers have agreed that, once feasibility has been determined at officials’ level, these proposals will be eligible for support under the AIPRD.

In addition, the Joint Commission agreed that scoping work and discussions between Australian and Government of Indonesia authorities should proceed with a view to identifying a substantial new program of assistance for national road improvement in Indonesia.

The Hon Alexander Downer MP Minister for Foreign Affairs Australia

HE Dr Hassan Wirajuda Minister for Foreign Affairs Republic of Indonesia

The Hon Peter Costello MP Treasurer Australia

HE Dr Jusuf Anwar Minister for Finance Republic of Indonesia

HE Dr Sri Mulyani Indrawati

State Minister of National Development Planning and Chair of the National Planning Board (BAPPENAS) Republic of Indonesia