Closer relations fostered with Denpasar, Indonesia
The international visit to Indonesia by a delegation of the Mossel Bay Municipality will forge closer relations between Mossel Bay and the city of Denpasar, Mossel Bay executive mayor Alderman Harry Levendal said at the monthly council meeting on Thursday, 1 November.
Although a formal report will be tabled in due course, the municipal manager, Advocate Thys Giliomee, told the Mossel Bay Advertiser that important lessons on international trade and relations were learnt and valuable contacts were established during the visit.
The mayor and municipal manager were participants of an official delegation that included, among others, the Western Cape MEC of Finance and International Relations, Dr Ivan Meyer.
Mossel Bay municipal councillors Anton Dellemijn, Erika Meyer and Marie de Klerk joined the tour at their own expense.
The visit was intended to improve trade relations between the Western Cape, and notably Mossel Bay and Indonesia and to further the negotiations on twinning arrangements between the city of Denpasar and the Mossel Bay Municipality.
"According to a PriceWaterhouseCoopers report Indonesia will be the fifth largest economy in the world by 2030.
"Currently, the economy is growing by 6% per year," Mayor Levendal said. He underscored the relevance of the first world conditions there, although Indonesia is seen as a developing country.
"The hospitality we experienced, the tourism-focused approach by all we met, the cleanliness and friendliness, I will always remember," the mayor added.
He said he was most impressed with the small, medium and micro enterprise development focus of the Indonesian government.
With respect to Mossel Bay, several specific opportunities were investigated and expanded on, such as the possibility of beef export to Indonesia, the development of an oceans economy, opportunities centred on the harbour as well as tourism-centric opportunities focused on the historical, cultural and gastronomic spheres.
A letter of intent, aimed at improving future trade, industry and tourism relations between Denpasar and Mossel Bay, was signed by mayor Levendal and the mayor of Denpasar, Rai Dharmawijaya Mantra on Monday, 15 October.
After meeting with the Honorary Consul of South Africa in Indonesia, who also is an advisor to the chairman of the Bali Business Chamber, Bagus Sudibye, was heartily invited to the next Dias and Port Festival in 2019.
"We have so much to learn from the tourism-centred approach, a follow-up meeting with tourist operators is proposed," Advocate Giliomee said. It is envisaged that a memorandum of understanding will follow the letter of intent and that this official visit will be but the first of a series of exchanges between not only the two cities but also between the two countries.
We have so much to learn from the tourism-centred approach, a follow-up meeting with tourist operators is proposed.
The executive mayor, Alderman Harry Levendal and municipal manager, Advocate Thys Giliomee with the letter of intent signed in Indonesia.