Tokyo. Japan's National Graduate Institute of Policy Studies, or Grips, has bestowed an honorary doctorate on former Indonesian finance minister Ginandjar Kartasasmita in Tokyo on Friday (25/03).
Ginandjar, who also headed the National Development Planning Agency (Bappenas) between 1993 and 1998, received the title from Grips chancellor, professor Takashi Shiraishi, who is an expert on Indonesia. It is Ginandjar's fifth honorary doctorate.
In his scholastic oration, Ginandjar shed light on the relations between Indonesia and Japan and the potential challenges the Land of the Rising Sun will face in the near future.
Bilateral relations have existed between Japan and Indonesia for 50 years and Ginandjar said he believes the East Asian country has played a pivotal role in Indonesia's development.
"Through the Overseas Development Assistance [ODA], Japan has promoted the growth of the educational, health, institutional and infrastructural sectors of the country," said Ginandjar, who also served as a top officer in the Indonesian Air Force.
"Japan is one of Indonesia's biggest investors, and they have largely contributed to the economic progress of our country, as well as the modernization of Indonesia," he added. "In the coming two or three decades, Indonesia will be on the right path to grow as a developed country, such as Japan and [South] Korea."
The ongoing relations between Japan and Indonesia serve as a foundation to increase the quality and value of technological and labor inputs in the archipelago.
Ginandjar, who now serves as a senior adviser to the Lippo Group, also stated that Indonesia and other Asian countries have a lot to learn from the way Japan successfully transformed itself from an agrarian society to an industrialized nation.