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Jakarta Post

Indonesia tries to lift trade barriers in Africa

  • News Desk

    The Jakarta Post

Jakarta   /   Wed, April 11, 2018   /   03:40 pm
Indonesia tries to lift trade barriers in Africa Exploring partnerships: Vice President Jusuf Kalla (front center), together with Coordinating Maritime Affairs Minister Luhut Pandjaitan (ninth right), Foreign Minister Retno Marsudi (eighth left) and Trade Minister Enggartiasto Lukita (sixth left), pose for a picture with the Indonesia-Africa Forum (IAF) delegates after the opening ceremony of the conference in Nusa Dua, Bali, on April 10. (Antara/Nyoman Budhiana)

Trade Minister Enggartiasto Lukita held bilateral meetings with delegates from Morocco, Somalia and Nigeria on the sidelines of the Indonesia-Africa Forum on Tuesday in Nusa Dua, Bali as part of the efforts to eliminate trade barriers.

“The bilateral meetings are parts of the effort to increase Indonesian trade with African countries that this year is expected to grow 11 percent,” said the minister as stated in a press statement received by The Jakarta Post on Wednesday.

Indonesian-African trade value was recorded at US$8.84 billion in 2017, a 15.25 percent increase compared to 2016.

One of the barriers to trade with African countries is high tariffs because Indonesia has no trade agreements with them, said Enggartiasto.

While meeting with Morocco Deputy Foreign Minister Mounia Boucetta, Enggartiasto discussed the preferential tariff agreement (PTA) negotiation proposed by Indonesia.

“During the meeting, Morocco supported the proposal. But before the PTA negotiation starts, there will be a meeting with experts in June to discuss the idea,” Enggartiasto said, adding that Indonesia would also send a trade mission to Morocco from June 27 to 28.

With the Nigerian secretary of the Mining and Steel Federal Ministry Abdulkadir Muazu, Enggartiasto sought confirmation about the Indonesian proposal to establish an Indonesia-Nigeria PTA and another PTA between Indonesia and the Economic Community of West African States of which Nigeria is a member.

Meanwhile, Enggartiasto said Somalia is a potential market, but Indonesia could not yet establish direct trade with the country because of security issues.  (bbn)