Indonesia, India aim to boost investment and trade


Indonesia and India have expressed optimism that their bilateral cooperation will grow and make a positive contribution not only to the two countries, but also to the Asia Pacific region and the world.

“India and Indonesia are the world’s second and fourth most populous countries. Both have been active in voicing the interests of developing countries. Both are also democratic states. Thus, there are great opportunities to bring the two countries’ partnership to a higher level,” Indonesian Foreign Minister Marty Natalegawa said in New
Delhi, India, as quoted in a statement released by the Foreign Ministry yesterday.

Marty was in India to lead the Indonesian delegation in the fourth Indonesia-India Joint Commission Meeting. They met with Indian officials led by Indian Foreign Minister S.M. Krishna.

According to the statement, the meeting resulted in agreements to boost cooperation in many sectors, particularly trade and investment, education, as well as development and infrastructure.

In addition, the meeting also discussed partnership in the areas of food security, agriculture, politics and security, as well as society and culture.

In the finance sector, for example, the forum agreed to avoid double taxation, the statement said.

Other outcomes included the agreement to hold the Indonesia-India CEO Meeting and the Indonesia-India Energy Forum by the end of this year.

“Both foreign ministers expressed optimism that the target of US$25 billion in trade volume in 2015 could be achieved,” the statement added.

Indonesia-India trade volume reached $17.66 billion in 2011, representing a 33.69 per cent increase from 2010’s $13.21 billion, with a surplus of $9.01 billion on the Indonesian side, according to data from the Trade Ministry.

Indonesia and India, both members of the G20, also agreed to enhance roles in regional and international forums, such as Asean, the Indian Ocean Rim Association for Regional Cooperation, the Non-Aligned Movement, the G20, and the UN.

The meeting also included talks on the preparation of the upcoming Asean–Indonesia Cooperation Commemorative Summit in New Delhi in December, which is expected to be attended by President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono.

In New Delhi, Marty also met with Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and delivered a speech before the Indian Council on World Affairs on Indonesia’s current global outlook.