MINISTER FOR FOREIGN AFFAIRS, The Hon Julie Bishop MP
5 November 2013
STRENGTHENING DEMOCRACY THROUGHOUT THE ASIA PACIFIC
Foreign Minister Julie Bishop will participate in the annual Bali Democracy Forum, to be hosted by Indonesian President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono from 7 to 8 November in Bali, Indonesia.
It will be the Minister’s third visit to Indonesia since being sworn in eight weeks ago.
The Bali Democracy Forum was established by President Yudhoyono in 2008 to promote the development of democracy in the Asia Pacific region. Leaders and ministers from around the region will attend.
Australia has been a strong supporter of the Forum since its inception and provides financial and operational support to the agency responsible, the Institute for Peace and Democracy, based in Bali.
“As one of the world’s largest and most vibrant democracies, Indonesia is a fitting host for the Forum,” Ms Bishop said.
Australia has a strong record of supporting democracy in our region – in Cambodia from the late 1980s, in Timor-Leste’s post-independence period, and through the Regional Assistance Mission to Solomon Islands over the last decade.
The Minister will speak on the topic “Building and Strengthening Democratic Institutions.”
“Through our aid program, we also work with partner governments to promote good governance and effective institutions as the essential building blocks of free societies,” she said.
“Support for democracy is, and will continue to be, a key thread in the overall fabric of Australia’s engagement with the region, reflecting our desire to make a contribution as a good global citizen,” Ms Bishop said.