On 25 June 2016, British Ambassador to Indonesia, ASEAN and Timor Leste His Excellency Moazzam Malik gave a statement to the media on the result of EU referendum.
The people of the United Kingdom have decided to chart a new future for our country outside the political institutions of the European Union. As the Prime Minister said yesterday, there can be no doubt about the result and the will of the British people must be respected.
This has been a hard fought and often bitter referendum campaign. Many are in mourning for the Britain that was; others are excited by the prospect of creating a new vision for Britain for the 21st century. Whether one voted for remain or to leave, now is a time to put aside our differences and to strive for unity and togetherness as we digest the implications and then find the way ahead.
There are many questions about the road ahead, many of which cannot be answered today. As the Prime Minister said, the government will seek to steady the ship and and then hand the reins of power to a new leadership in the autumn to begin the formal process of negotiating with the European Union. This negotiating process and implementation will take some years.
Whilst there is much uncertainty ahead there’s also a lot that is known. The UK remains a country of 65 million diverse and talented people - a multi racial and multi faith democracy. We will continue to be a top 10 world economy, outward oriented, innovative and committed to a rules based international system. We will remain a G20 country, a G7 nation, a Permanent Member of the UN Security Council, a member of NATO; and the only country in the world committed to spending 2% of GDP on defense and 0.7% GNI on development assistance.
We are ranked 2nd in the world for soft power. London remains the world’s leading financial centre, sat between the U.S. and Asian time zones. We continue to have some of the best universities in the world, some of the best cutting-edge research, innovation and design, world beating creative industries and some of the most efficient and competitive manufacturing capabilities. And of course we have three British nations competing in Euro 2016: England, Wales, and Northern Ireland; and a star studded English Premier League football season ahead.
The UK will continue to be committed to building a close relationship with Indonesia, a G20 partner that is vital for the future prosperity, security and sustainability of our planet. During PM David Cameron’s visit to Jakarta last year and President Jokowi’s visit to London in April, the two countries committed themselves to building a close and deep relationship. We have signed seven Memoranda of Understanding in the last 12 months covering: higher education, innovation and research, policing, space, creative industries, sports, and of course maritime.
Alongside this hundreds of British and Indonesian businesses are building close partnerships. Record numbers of Indonesians are studying in and visiting the UK; rapidly growing numbers of academics are teaching and doing research together; and British and Indonesian faith groups are coming together to learn from each other’s experience in protecting tolerance and plurality.
As my friend Foreign Minister Retno Marsudi said yesterday evening, our work continues.
May I take this opportunity to wish our friends in Indonesia a very happy Ramadan and a peaceful Eid Ul Fitri. Thank you.