Jakarta: The government is confident that the Indonesia-Australia Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement (IA-CEPA) can give a lot of economic benefits to the two neighboring countries.
Australia and Indonesia signed the landmark trade deal in Jakarta this morning. The two countries wrapped up the long-awaited economic agreement after some nine years of negotiations.
The agreement document was signed by Indonesian Trade Minister Enggartiasto Lukita and his Australian counterpart Simon Birmingham. The signing ceremony was witnessed by Vice President Jusuf Kalla.
"It is a mutually beneficial partnership," Vice President Kalla said here on Monday.
IA-CEPA is aimed to create new trade and investment opportunities for Australian and Indonesian businesses. It is expected to increase prosperity in both countries.
According to reports, trade between Indonesia and Australia stood at US$8.6 billion in 2018. In addition to that, the value Australian investments in Indonesia stood at US$597 million last year.
"Indonesia is committed to develop its human resources. We want to be more competitive. we are ready to embrace the future," the former Golkar Party chairman remarked.
According to a report from the Central Statistics Agency (BPS), Indonesia recorded a trade deficit of US$1.16 billion in January 2019. It increased by US$0.13 billion compared to the previous month.
Indonesia's export value reached US$13.87 billion last month. It declined by 3.24 percent compared to the previous month.
The country's import value reached US$ 15.03 billion last month. It declined by 2.19 percent compared to the previous month.
In the meantime, Indonesian economy grew by 5.17 percent in 2018. It was Indonesia's highest annual growth in five years.
Indonesian economy grew by 5.18 percent in the fourth quarter of 2018. The growth was slightly stronger than earlier expectations.
With a population of 270 million and high levels of economic growth, Indonesia is on track to become one of the world’s largest economies.