Indonesia to Take Full Advantage of ASEM 6

The 6th ASEM summit would be a great opportunity to meet with major countries to discuss issues that important for Indonesia and the region, stated officials from the Foreign, Trade, and Finance Ministries according to Jakarta Post.
“We have to use this opportunity to take full advantage of the forum to increase the welfare of our people. In trade, for instance, we can cooperate in bilateral or multilateral frameworks to build our capacity in customs, port handling, and transportation,” said foreign ministry director general for America and Europe Eddi S. Hariyadhi.
Anggito Abimanyu, head of the finance ministry’s fiscal policy agency, said that so far ASEM had generated many positives for Indonesia. “Aside from the main forum, we can negotiate many agreements bilaterally on the sidelines of the official meetings with many countries, to enhance trade relations and investment,” he told a seminar on Asia-Europe relations organized by the foreign ministry this week.
Anggito said debt restructuring would also be an important issue.
He said ASEM had helped increase trade and investment among around 4 billion people in the 38 member countries.
During the 1999-2004 period, Asian countries’ exports to Europe jumped by 225 percent to 266 billion euros, or 30 percent of Europe’s total imports, while in the same period Asia’s imports from Europe grew by 140 percent to 169 billion euros.
However, trade ministry director general of international trade Hery Soetanto said Indonesian officials had to drive and implement policies that supported the leaders’ agreements otherwise the accords signed could be meaningless.
Anggito said to improve its effectiveness, ASEM should intensify capacity building in trade and investment.
Meanwhile, Hery and Edy Prasetyono of the Centre for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS) said ASEM needed to enhance the level of commitment among members and establish an ASEM secretariat to better coordinate the meeting’s activities.
ASEM was initiated in 1996 to strengthen dialog and political. financial and cultural ties between Asia and Europe. Organised every two years, its venue alternates between Asia and Europe.
The participants of the ASEM Summit are representatives of the European Commission, the 25 EU member states, the 10 members of ASEAN plus China, Japan and South Korea.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *