Close coordination between neighbors conducive to ensuring regional stability

Relations with countries on its periphery have always had a special niche in China's diplomacy, and its bonds with neighboring countries have only grown stronger as they have worked together to overcome the challenges arising from the COVID-19 pandemic.

China's relations with Indonesia, the biggest economy in the 10-member Association of Southeast Asian Nations and an influential regional power, are an exemplary model of the win-win cooperation and common development that China promotes in its periphery diplomacy. Hence, it is expected that Indonesian President Joko Widodo's visit to China this week will not only lift bilateral ties to a higher level but also contribute to the overall interaction between China and Southeast Asian nations.

Widodo is the first foreign head of state to visit China since the Beijing Winter Olympics and China is also the first stop on his first tour of East Asia since the onset of the pandemic. This underscores the importance China and Indonesia attach to bilateral ties.

Both developing countries, China and Indonesia share broad common interests and wide space for cooperation. It can be expected that the two countries will continue to enrich the content of their comprehensive strategic partnership, open more horizons for their reciprocal cooperation and coordinate their positions as representatives of emerging economies.

As Indonesia holds the G20 presidency this year, the upcoming G20 summit is also likely to feature in the talks between the leaders of the two countries. And they are expected to discuss how major economies can work together to tackle the global challenges and shore up solidarity and coordination so as to inject vitality into the post-pandemic economic recovery of the world economy and contribute more to global equity and justice.

With the United States viewing the region as the anvil on which to temper its containment strategy targeting China, the resolve of Indonesia to strengthen ties with China and coordinate on issues of regional and international significance will in itself help foster the much-needed regional stability.

In an attempt to win more regional influence, the US is scheduled to host a virtual meeting on Tuesday with officials from the 14 countries that have joined the "Indo-Pacific Economic Framework for Prosperity", which is the economic wing of the US "Indo-Pacific strategy" aimed at containing China's development.

US Deputy Secretary of State Wendy Sherman and US Ambassador to Australia Caroline Kennedy also plan to visit the Solomon Islands next month amid the intensified geopolitical competition against China in the Pacific Island region. And in Indonesia on Sunday as part of Washington's efforts to portray China in a bad light, Mark Milley, chairman of the US Joint Chiefs of Staff, claimed that the Chinese military had become "significantly and noticeably more aggressive" in the region.

China and Indonesia strengthening their solidarity and cooperation can act as a counterbalance to Washington's actions that are undermining the peace, stability and development that the region desires.