Indonesia was keen on signing a sister-state agreement with the Tamil Nadu government, according to the country's ambassador to India, Andi M Ghalib.
Talking to reporters yesterday, he said that he planned to meet the governor as also the chief minister, expressing the desire of his country to sign the sister-state agreement and explore the business and investment potential with regard to coal mining and other sectors. The ambassador would visit a coal-fired thermal power plant of Coastal Energen, the Indian arm of Coal and Oil group of Dubai, under implementation in Tuticorin.
Ghalib, who is on a visit to the city, said ''Tamil Nadu is very important to us. We are going to upgrade our office of Honorary Consul in Chennai into the Consulate General. We have formally sent a proposal to our government. It will be managed by eight officials.''
The highest priority has been accorded to tourism in investment and business promotion and last year 1.8 lakh Indians visited Indonesia and the figure is likely to increase to 2.4 lakh this year.
Garuda, the Indonesian state carrier, would start direct flights from Jakarta to four Indian metros and possibly the maiden flight would be to Chennai, he said.
Mentioning that the bilateral trade between the two countries had been rising, he said a 50- member-strong business delegation from various parts of India would visit Indonesia, from 6-13 May 6-13. The delegation would be appraised of the scope for investment in diverse areas including agriculture, rubber, mining, coal, textiles, defence and information technology.