Indonesia is Ready to Face World Geopolitical Uncertainty

President Joko Widodo is the eye of the Indonesian nation and state who sees the world very sharply. Through this sharpness, President Joko Widodo said, “We know that the world is not okay at the moment.”

This notification was delivered by President Joko Widodo, as reported by Rakyat Merdeka (8 August 2023), in front of more than 500 participants of the 2023 ASEAN Intercultural and Interreligious Dialogue Conference, in Jakarta, Indonesia – a matter of concern for world citizens.

If we look further, indeed, world geopolitics today is often unstable and full of challenges, with various problems that indicate that things are not going well.

This geopolitical instability is partly caused by great power competition. Where the competition between big powers such as the United States, China and Russia is already so complex and complicated.

Also regarding territorial disputes. Also mention the border issues and disputed areas in the South China Sea between several countries in Southeast Asia and China – which have also caused regional tensions.

Geopolitical instability also arises due to the humanitarian crisis. If an armed conflict erupts, a humanitarian crisis will emerge, such as in Syria, Yemen and Myanmar. This has caused great suffering for civilians – and created pressure on the international community.

In contrast to this, the migration and refugee crisis emerged, and this also triggered political and social instability in certain regions – while the international response to this problem was not always coherent.

Not to mention the struggle for natural resources, geopolitical instability has also emerged. Accompanied by climate change and competition over increasingly limited natural resources, this can also trigger conflicts in various regions. A number of countries compete to secure access to scarce resources.

From all these premises, it is understandable what President Joko Widodo said for Indonesia to have preparations, “If Indonesia does not have preparations, the impact could be very troublesome.” Of course, the entire Indonesian nation does not want to suffer the hardship of world geopolitical instability.

Therefore, Indonesia must be strong and brave in playing its role in world geopolitical and geostrategic platforms. However, Indonesia has a very important role in the context of geopolitics and strategy – even though the world is experiencing geopolitical instability.

Indonesia has several key roles in facing global geopolitical challenges. In terms of maintaining regional stability, it is clear that Indonesia must play a role in maintaining stability and peace in the Southeast Asia region. Where do you know that Indonesia is the chairman of ASEAN (Association of Southeast Asian Nations), this role has been implemented.

Including Indonesia’s role in providing assistance and protection to refugees and victims of conflict and humanitarian crises in the Southeast Asia region.

At the same time, it also plays a role in geographical position, where Indonesia provides control over strategic shipping routes, especially the Malacca Strait which is an important trade route. Here too, Indonesia has a role in maintaining maritime security and facilitating international trade flows.

Not only that, Indonesia must also intensively play the role of facilitating dialogue and diplomacy to overcome conflicts and differences of opinion at regional and international levels. The basis of this role also makes Indonesia often a mediator in various issues and conflicts in the Southeast Asia region.

An unlimited role also requires Indonesia to build and strengthen partnerships with other countries that have similar values and goals in an effort to maintain global stability. This partnership can cover the fields of security, trade, investment and technological cooperation.

In facing world conditions that are not good, Indonesia can play an active role in efforts to mitigate conflict, promote regional and international cooperation, and ensure stability in the Southeast Asia region and globally.

This must, among other things, involve diplomacy, cooperation and ongoing efforts to strengthen the role of Indonesian culture in geopolitical and strategic affairs.

(Prof. Dr. Ermaya Suradinata, SH, MH, MSI, is the former Director General of Social and Political Affairs of the Indonesian Ministry of Home Affairs, Chancellor of IPDN, Governor of Lemhannas RI, and currently the Expert Council for Geopolitics and Geostrategy of BPIP RI.)