Jakarta — Indonesia and Malaysia are seeking to enhance bilateral ties following the planned visit of Prime Minister Mahathir Mohammad to Jakarta on Thursday (28/06). Spokesperson of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs Arrmanatha Nasir revealed during a press briefing on Thursday that President Joko Widodo and Foreign Minister Retno Marsudi will welcome Mahathir upon arrival at Halim Perdanakusumah Airport this evening. It will Mahathir’s first bilateral visit to a Southeast Asian country after assuming the post of prime minister for the second time on May 10, 2018. Mahathir will be accompanied by wife, Siti Hasmah Mohd. Ali, and officials from the prime ministry’s office and Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Malaysia. During the visit, Mahathir will be meeting Indonesian President Joko Widodo at the Bogor Palace on Friday and will be followed by a luncheon hosted by the president. “Several issues to be highlighted by the two leaders will efforts to improve economic cooperation, especially in the fields of trade and investment,” Nasir said. Statistics indicated that in 2017, the total bilateral trade was recorded at US$17.2 billion, thereby making Malaysia the seventh largest trading partner globally and the third largest trading partner among ASEAN member countries after Singapore and Thailand. In the same year, Malaysia’s total investment value in Indonesia reached $1.2 billion. In addition to economic cooperation, the protection of Indonesian citizens will be highlighted by Indonesia since some 2.5 million Indonesians live in Malaysia. Both leaders will also discuss efforts to offer wider access Indonesian and Malaysian palm oil in the European market and combat negative campaign against the commodity. President Joko Widodo will utilize the opportunity to promote Indonesia’s concept of Indo-Pacific to Malaysia. Both leaders will have the opportunity to exchange views on regional and global issues that are of common interest to both countries.