New Zealand Embassy Jakarta, Indonesia

Selwyn District in New Zealand signs Sister District Agreement with North Toraja Regency, Indonesia

Last week the long-standing cooperation between the coffee growers in North Toraja Regency in Sulawesi, Indonesia, and a group of Canterbury farmers, many of whom are from Selwyn District in New Zealand, was recognised with the signing of a Sister District Agreement between the two districts.

Selwyn District Mayor Kelvin Coe was in North Toraja on a personal visit last week to sign the Sister District Agreement and visit a number of coffee growing sites.

“This agreement cements the exceptional relationship our farming community already has with the North Toraja farmers, and will help to foster cultural ties between the two districts,” he said.

New Zealand Ambassador to Indonesia, David Taylor was also delighted to see the cooperation between the two districts recognised in the Sister District Agreement. “This is the first agreement of its kind between a New Zealand district and an Indonesian one,” Ambassador Taylor said. “I am sure that it will prove very successful in bringing a kiwi flavour to a remote and vibrant corner of Indonesia.”

This Agreement formalises a relationship which has been developing for over twelve years between a dedicated group of mainly Canterbury farmers chaired by Graham Robertson, and a group of coffee growers in the North Toraja Regency. The farmers have been providing support and advice to the North Torajan coffee growers on how best to produce, market, and sell their coffee. 

Through the exchange of education, culture and agricultural knowledge, the two districts hope to strengthen both understanding and friendship between Selwyn and Toraja, as well as contributing to broader ties between New Zealand and Indonesia.

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