JAKARTA: The Indonesian parliament on Thursday (Dec 15) ratified a sea border treaty with Singapore demarcating maritime boundaries in the eastern stretch of the Singapore Strait.
Deputy speaker for the House of Representatives Fahri Hamzah, who led the plenary session, officiated the decision which had the approval of majority of the lawmakers.
"We endorse the government of Indonesia to further establish cooperation to secure our economic as well as maritime benefits," said Hanafi Rais, deputy chairman from the National Mandate Party.
Mr Rais, who is also the deputy chairman of Commission I, which oversees defence and foreign affairs, added that the next step is for both countries to exchange the ratified documents.
Singapore and Indonesia signed the sea border treaty in 2014 when former Indonesian president Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono visited Singapore.
The agreement defines the boundary spanning a 9.45-kilometre stretch between Changi and Batam. It is the third maritime border treaty between the two countries along the Singapore Strait.
Singapore welcomed the news of the ratification, a spokesman from the country's Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MFA) said in a media statement on Thursday night.
The MFA spokesman added: "The Treaty underscores our excellent working relationship and bilateral ties, and demonstrates the ability of both countries to work together in areas of mutual interest. Singapore is prepared to exchange the instruments of ratification once Indonesia is ready to do so.”
In 1973, both countries agreed on the maritime boundary along the central part of the waterways. In 2009, an agreement on boundaries in the western section was reached.