Turkey, Indonesia agree on talks on new trade pact

Turkey, Indonesia agree on talks on new trade pact

YOGYAKARTA, Indonesia - Anadolu Agency
Turkey, Indonesia agree on talks on new trade pact

The Indonesian and Turkish governments on Oct. 12 agreed to start negotiations on the Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement (CEPA) in November in an attempt to further strengthen economic cooperation between the two countries.

The agreement came following a meeting between Turkish Deputy Prime Minister Fikri Işık and Trade Minister Enggartiasto Lukita.

In July, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan and his Indonesian counterpart Joko Widodo had agreed to continue the positive trend in trade and investment ties during a meeting in the Turkish capital Ankara.

“We want to speed up talks in accordance with President Joko Widodo’s commitment made during his visit to Turkey last July,” Lukita said.

He told state-run Anadolu Agency that a framework for cooperation was supposed to be made eight years ago, but it could only be realized now.

“In the early stages of the negotiations, we wanted to form a PTA [Preferential Trade Agreement]. Turkey’s government had also agreed,” he said.

“To implement the PTA, it takes a long time of negotiations, so we can start with the CEPA first,” Lukita said.

Işık said the two countries were focused on diversifying Turkish and Indonesian commercial ties.

“A roadmap has been made to achieve the trade target of $10 billion in 2023, as agreed by the leaders of both countries,” he said.

The two countries expressed commitment to improving the trade volume, which was $1.7 billion last year, down by 9 percent from a year earlier.

“One of the substantial instruments to improve bilateral trade and economic relations between the two countries is through the signing of the CEPA agreement,” he said.

Işık also invited Lukita to cooperate in the field of halal foods standardization between the two countries.

Both sides also agreed to strengthen cooperation in the tourism sector.

In September, Indonesia and Turkey signed a defense and aerospace cooperation agreement to build submarines, tanks and unmanned aircraft.