Youth must change mindset about foreign diplomacy: Minister

Jakarta (ANTARA News) – Indonesias Minister of Foreign Affairs Retno LP Marsudi has appealed to the younger generation in Indonesia to change their mindsets regarding foreign diplomacy.

“Sometimes you might tend to forget where we are as a country, we are a large one; we have the fourth largest population in the world, and we are a member of the G20, and I would like to say, when you are a citizen of a G20 country member, act like one, but more often than not, in foreign diplomacy, we get questions along the lines of what can we get from this country? How much can we get from that country?” she told dozens of university students during a public lecture themed Talk-show with Indonesias Minister of Foreign Affairs: Indonesias Diplomacy and its Challenges in the Ministrys Nusantara Auditorium, here on Friday.

During the interactive lecture, one of the participants pointed out that most youth in Indonesia were pessimistic about foreign cooperation, as they were unsure of the benefits Indonesia would get from these partnerships. Marsudi responded by saying that the younger generation should not think pessimistically.

“If you start your life with pessimism, what you reap will be the results of the negativity you started with. I always remind my team to use their positive energy. I, myself, fully believe in the power of positive energy and with that, you are going to win one way or another,” Marsudi said.

She emphasized the importance of fairness, as well as on the concept of take and give in diplomacy.

“We are used to seeing our country as one that is always asking, as the hand that is looking up from under, asking to be given something,” Marsudi noted.

Minister further stated that Indonesia was admittedly still a developing country, but it did not mean that it should not help other countries.

“Diplomacy is not just about taking, but it is also about helping others,” she reiterated.

Furthermore, she explained that the results of integrated cooperation may not be visible as they do not reach the people directly as individuals.

For example, following the economic integration done through the ASEAN, Indonesia gained with several investments and the establishment of factory units.

“There are no ASEAN labels on them, but those are some tangible examples of how foreign cooperation and integrated economic partnerships work. You do not feel it, per se, but it is happening,” she concluded.

Source: Antara News