At the end of her two-day trip to indonesia, she said in jakarta on wednesday that in their own interests the federal republic and europe as a whole should also strengthen their relations with the world’s largest muslim country. She warned: "if we as europeans do not stay together, we will not be able to influence the development of the world."
Meanwhile, a possible tank deal between germany and indonesia continued to cause a stir. Hans-christian strobele, member of the german bundestag, called for the indonesian government’s interest in the leopard 2 main battle tank to be discussed at next week’s special session of parliament. The defense ministry clarified that there had not yet been a formal request from jakarta. According to media reports, 100 used leopard tanks from the german armed forces are at stake.
Indonesian president susilo bambang yudhoyono indirectly confirmed interest in the tanks after a meeting with merkel on tuesday. The chancellor did not comment on the matter.
On the second day of merkel’s visit, the focus was on protection against tsunami disasters and economic relations between the two countries. The chancellor stressed that indonesia is following the financial crisis in europe very closely. "People are betting on europe and that’s why i feel encouraged to fight for this europe."Indonesia itself went through a severe financial and economic crisis at the end of the 1990s and took many years to recover. The world’s fourth-largest country has already learned that a package of measures is not enough.
The president of the federation of german industries, hans-peter keitel, told the german press agency that the indonesian government representatives had approached the german business representatives openly and without prejudice. "We are not the ones competing in the cheap market, but we have to convince the indonesians, like everyone else in the world, that we provide the good, long-term quality, the best technology, and that this is a little more expensive. Here today we have found a lot of understanding."
Merkel visited the tsunami early warning center in jakarta and called it a prime example of german-indonesian cooperation. She wished the employees "good luck".
The facility was opened in 2011 and built for 53 million euros largely by the geoforschungszentrum potsdam with indonesian partners. In 2004, a 9.1 magnitude earthquake off the coast of northwest sumatra and a resulting tsunami killed 165,000 people in indonesia alone. They were completely surprised by the tsunami. A total of 230,000 people lost their lives.
The center warns a maximum of five minutes after a quake based on information from around 300 measuring stations set up throughout indonesia. This includes seismometers, GPS stations and coastal gauges.
The quake off the south coast of sumatra on 25. October 2010, however, showed the limits of the tsunami early warning system. The offshore mentawi islands in the sunda arc were particularly hard hit by the tsunami that struck. At about the same time as the alarm was sounded within 5 minutes, the first waves hit the area, leaving no time to react and killing 500 people.