“What is missing? What is missing is an overarching grand strategy,” said Djalal at a public discussion on Indonesia’s “Foreign Policy Outlook 2023,” held by the Indonesian Foreign Policy Community (FPCI) here on Tuesday.
Under President Joko Widodo’s administration, Indonesia has devised a grand strategy of the Global Maritime Fulcrum, an approach aimed at contributing to stability in the Indo-Pacific region, he noted.
However, Djalal, who is also the founder and chairman of the FPCI, said he believes that the strategy has not been fully implemented.
“And it was more infrastructure projects than geopolitics,” he added.
The challenge for Indonesia with increasing diplomatic and political capital, he said, is the need to increase its role in assisting the handling of geopolitical issues.
President Widodo is more involved in a number of free trade pacts, but is more careful about geopolitical issues.
In fact, the geopolitical challenges, contentions, and rivalries that have continued to increase in countries in the world require Indonesia to provide a response that is more than just sticking one foot forward.
“We just say, dialogue, no rivalries, cooperation and peace, which are good themes. But, you got to go a lot deeper than that,” he said.
Indonesia, he added, will need to translate these steps into the Indo-Pacific strategy, ASEAN strategy, multilateral strategy, and the South Pacific strategy.
Indonesia has many strategic partnerships. However, Djalal informed that the strategic partnerships run on their own individually, without a great grand strategy guiding them right, he said.
Hence, Indonesia needs to pay more attention to and increase its role in assisting the handling of geopolitical issues, he opined.
“We do need to step up our geopolitical game,” Djalal said.