University Al Azhar of Indonesia (UAI) with the Greek Embassy and the Indonesian Greek Foundation held a webinar with the theme “Strengthening the Prospects of Greek and Indonesian Collaboration in Education and Tourism”. This webinar was organized on February 17, 2021, and presented H.E. Apostolos Baltas as the Ambassador of Greece to Indonesia as the keynote speaker.
Another keynote speaker is the Rector of UAI, Prof. Dr. Ir. Asep Saefuddin, M.Sc and the event were hosted by Irsyad Iskandar who is no less cool than the keynote speakers, as he is the Executive Director of the Indonesia-Greece Foundation. This webinar was also attended by Mr. Luluk Sumiarso as the former President Commissioner of PLN and Mr. Safrizal Akbar who is the founder of the Indonesia-Greece Foundation.
Prof. Asep called for concrete cooperation between the two countries in the tourism and education sectors to help the economic conditions of their respective countries and the importance of synergies for the progress of each country’s universities and to build better quality students and educators.
H.E. Apostolos Baltas concurred with Prof. Asep remark, as he conveyed that Greece is very open to cooperative initiatives both in the education and tourism sectors between the two countries. He emphasized on how important it is today that the tourism sector cooperation focused on ecotourism, given how global warning effects are more severe than the last two decade. It would be wise for the current generation to left a legacy of tourism that cared about the environment for the sustainability of the earth and for the next generation.
“Tourism is one of Greece most important income, hence Greece’s main focus in strengthening the tourism sector after the Covid-19 pandemic is to make Greece a safe tourist destination. Therefore tourists will be safe and sound to visit Greece. Indonesian tourism is also a significant element of the country’s economy, on the other hand Indonesia have many stunning tourist destinations to make Indonesia a great tourism country. Nonetheless Indonesia needs to further maximize its promotion in the tourism sector to fully harnessed its tourism potential.” said H.E. Apostolos Baltas.
In the webinar discussion session, Ir. Ary Syahriar, M.Sc., Ph.D., as Vice Rector IV for Innovation, Entrepreneurship and Development of UAI, proposed to establish a centre for Greek studies at UAI. H.E. Apostolos Baltas is very open to the proposal and said, if there is interest from UAI students and others, we will asses this possibility.
The webinar was officially closed with a group photo. Afterwards, the two parties discussed the possibility of another webinar and collaboration in the future. There is hope and enthusiasm that this cooperation can bring benefits to Indonesia and Greece.