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Published: 15:25, August 16, 2022 | Updated: 18:23, August 16, 2022
Jokowi: Indonesia reaches 'pinnacle of global leadership'
By Reuters
Published:15:25, August 16, 2022 Updated:18:23, August 16, 2022 By Reuters

Indonesian President Joko Widodo gestures during his annual speech at the parliament in Jakarta on Aug 16, 2022, on the eve of the country's Independence Day celebrations. (TATAN SYUFLANA / POOL / AFP)

JAKARTA - Indonesian President Joko Widodo on Tuesday hailed his country's growing stature on the global stage and reiterated calls for the Southeast Asian nation to be a "bridge of peace" between Russia and Ukraine.

"In 2022, we hold the presidency of the G20, an international forum made up of the world's largest economies. Next year, we will assume the chairmanship of ASEAN," he said in an annual state of the nation speech a day before Indonesia celebrates 77 years of independence.

"It indicates that we (are at the) pinnacle of global leadership," he added.

ALSO READ: ASEAN key role seen to boost food security

As head of the G20 this year Jokowi, as the president is known, has taken an increasingly active role in foreign affairs.

In 2022, we hold the presidency of the G20, an international forum made up of the world's largest economies. Next year, we will assume the chairmanship of ASEAN

Joko Widodo, Indonesia’s President

In late June he traveled to Kyiv and Moscow to meet with his Ukrainian and Russian counterparts, Volodymyr Zelenskiy and Vladimir Putin, as part of diplomatic efforts to find a peaceful solution to the war and ease the global food crisis. He was the first Asian leader to do so.

Indonesia, he said, "has been accepted as a diplomatic bridge" between the two nations.

In the televised national address Jokowi also noted the country's economic fundamentals remain strong amid a volatile global economy, with inflation at 4.9 percent and economic growth reaching 5.4 percent in the second quarter of 2022.

As the pandemic eases, relatively low case numbers this year have allowed Jokowi to refocus on his priorities, including economic growth and infrastructure development in Southeast Asia's largest economy.

READ MORE: Indonesia urges G20 joint forum to tackle food crisis

The parliament passed legislation earlier this year on relocating the country's capital to Indonesian Borneo, a cornerstone of the president's agenda.

Jokowi, who donned a traditional outfit from Bangka Belitung islands off Sumatra, the color of which his private secretary said represented a "green future", was elected in 2014 and will finish his second and final term in 2024.

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