Indonesia, China get a little cozier

Indonesia, China get a little cozier
Chinese President Xi Jinping (front L) accompanies Indonesia's President Joko Widodo (front R) to view an honour guard during a welcoming ceremony inside the Great Hall of the People in Beijing on March 26, 2015.

BEIJING - Chinese President Xi Jinping pledged greater investment in Indonesia's infrastructure in a meeting here Thursday with counterpart Joko Widodo.

Widodo voiced support for China's proposed Asian infrastructure bank, saying Indonesia plans to make use of the financing.

The two leaders signed a memorandum of understanding on co-operation in high-speed rail between Jakarta and Bandung.

Other documents signed at the meeting covered aerospace and marine search-and-rescue co-operation.

Xi and Widodo agreed on a goal of raising annual bilateral trade to US$150 billion (S$205 billion) by 2020.

Speaking to reporters afterward, Widodo rolled out the welcome mat for Chinese tourists, saying Indonesia would grant visa-free entry.

He invited Xi to next month's summit commemorating the 60th anniversary of the Bandung Conference, a landmark gathering of Asian and African leaders.

Indonesia wants close ties with China, Widodo stressed during his talk with Xi. The Chinese president spoke of deepening co-operation in maritime affairs, defence, counter-terrorism and other areas.

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