Thu, 06 May 2010

Kuala Lumpur (ANTARA News/Bernama) - Malaysia and Indonesia Tuesday signed an agreement to boost cooperation in the fields of information and communications especially those involving the content industry for mutual benefits.

Information Communication and Culture Minister Dr Rais Yatim
said this was necessary as cooperation in communications and information sharing between the two countries was still lacking.

He said such cooperation was also necessary to speed up the enculturation of the Malaysian and Indonesian identity as close neighbours in the region.

"We have discussed and we realise that there is a lack of content in communication programmes in the mobile telephones, television and broadband.

"As such, Malaysia and Indonesia plan to use the content industry as an important aspect," he said at a press conference after a meeting of the Joint Committee on Information and Communication (JCICM) between Malaysia and Indonesia, here.

The 17-member Indonesian delegation was led by Communication and Information Technology Minister Tifatul Sembiring.

Tifatul said Indonesia was worried about the negative developments in the content industry and the foreign influence that could give a negative impact to the Indonesian and Malaysian culture and identity.

Rais said it was also suggested that Bernama TV and the Indonesian national news agency, Antara, be given a bigger role as the developers of programmes that would benefit both countries.

He said Bernama TV and Antara were expected to meet at the end of the year to study closely the programmes that could be carried out jointly.

Other matters that were also discussed were efforts to reduce the `roaming` charge for mobile telephone services in both countries and joint-ventures in producing commemorative stamps for bilateral relations.

Rais said Malaysia also planned to widen the money remittance service to Indonesia through Pos Malaysia.

The committee, which was set up in 1984, had met nine times with the last meeting held in Jakarta in June 2008.

Meanwhile, Tifatul took the opportunity to visit Radio Television Malaysia (RTM) here this afternoon.

During the visit at 2.30pm, the Indonesian minister was given a briefing on the radio and TV operations at RTM.(*)