Deputy minister of trade, Jerry Sambuaga, said his office targeting four trade agreement to be completed in this year from a total 11 trade negotiations still ongoing - Photo by Trade Ministry Office

JAKARTA (TheInsiderStories) – Deputy minister of trade, Jerry Sambuaga, said his office targeting four trade agreements to be completed in this year from a total 11 trade negotiations still ongoing. In 2020, the ministry has completed seven trade cooperation including the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP). 

“We are targeting we can complete 3 – 4 trade agreements in this year,” he told the media virtually on Monday (04/12).

He did not specify the trade agreements, but there are some negotiations were still ongoing, such as the Indonesia – European Union CEPA, Indonesia – Turkey CEPA, Indonesia – Pakistan THREE, Indonesia-Tunisia PTA, Indonesia – Bangladesh PTA, Indonesia – Iran PTA, Indonesia – Mauritius PTA, Indonesia – Morocco PTA, ASEAN Economic Community, ASEAN – India FTA Review (AIFTA), and ASEAN – Australia – New Zealand FTA Review.

Currently, House of Representatives and the government has agreed on the ratified the Indonesia – European Free Trade Association Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement (IE-CEPA). So far, he asserted, the government has completed 22 trade agreements. Of these total, there are some that have entered the ratification stage and some are already in the implementation stage.

For an example, Indonesia – Australia CEPA has been ratified by the parliament in 2020. Based on the ministry data, three trade agreements came into effect in 2020, namely ASEAN – Hong Kong – China Free Trade Agreement and ASEAN – Hong Kong – China Investment Agreement on July 4.

There are also the Protocol to Amend ASEAN – Japan Comprehensive Economic Partnership and Indonesia’ Preferential Trade – Mozambique  which has been decided to be ratified by a presidential decree.  Furthermore, Indonesia – Korea Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement (IK-CEPA) and the RCEP which were recently signed by the country. 

Beside the existing trade agreements, now, said Sambuaga, Indonesia prepared 21 deals that in the exploration stage, majority are non-traditional markets. The trade agreements included the Indonesia – South Africa Customs Union, Indonesia – Economic Community of West African States PTA, Indonesia – East African Community PTA, Indonesia – Djibouti PTA, and Indonesia – Colombia PTA.

“The government needs to take strategic policies to face the current global challenges in these full of uncertainty and encourages the economic recovery after the COVID-19 pandemic,” minister of trade, Muhammad Lutfi, told the lawmakers on March 23).

He continued, the EFTA countries are ideal partners for Indonesia because they have strong purchasing power markets and having a large foreign investment value, which has not been utilized in a maximum capacity. This opportunity, he adds, can be used as an entry point for goods, services, and investment in the continent also has the potential export destinations for the complementary products from the country.

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