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INDONESIA, AUSTRALIA HOLD BILATERAL TALKS DISCUSS TRADE

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RCEP which is still a draft free trade pact covers 16 countries which make up 40 percent of the global gross domestic product.

Greatindonesia.co.id, Bangkok – Indonesian Trade Minister Enggartiasto Lukita held bilateral talks with his Australian counterpart, Simon Birmingham on the sidelines of the 51st ASEAN Economic Ministers’ Meeting (AEM) held in Bangkok, Thailand, on Sunday (9/9/2019).

The meeting took place a few hours before ministerial negotiations on the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) multilateral economic agreement which has been under negotiations for several years.

RCEP which is still a draft free trade pact covers 16 countries which make up 40 percent of the global gross domestic product.

Heads of state/government from 16 RCEP member states have expressed the hope the substantial discussion of the pact could be concluded in November 2019. Australia is one of the 16 countries involved in RCEP and has great interests in this pact.

Lukita is scheduled to deliver the outcome of his bilateral talks with the Australian trade minister and ministerial meeting for RCEP on Sunday evening local time.

Related news: Government eyes completion of RCEP, IK-CEPA, IT-ECA by 2019: minister
Related news: ASEAN economic ministers stress on RCEP finalization

During the opening of the 51st AEM on Friday, Thai Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha in the capacity as ASEAN Chairman underlined the significance of finalizing the RCEP agreement at the end of this year. He believes that the RCEP will promote closer and more stable economic, trade, and investment climate between ASEAN member states and their partners.

“The finalization of RCEP this year will reflect the trust of the region and dialog partners in synchronizing trade and investment,” he stated.

RCEP agreement is also considered important to increase trade among countries in the region amidst the escalation of global trade tensions and potential global economic recession.

RCEP is an ASEAN-centered proposal for a regional free trade area that will initially include the 10 ASEAN member states and those countries that have existing free trade agreements (FTAs) with ASEAN: Australia, China, India, Japan, Republic of Korea, and New Zealand. (iap)

INTERNATIONAL

INDONESIA ENCOURAGES MUSLIM UNITY AT KUALA LUMPUR

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Foreign Minister, Retno Marsudi.

Greatindonesia.co.id, Kuala Lumpur – The Indonesian government encouraged the unity and cohesion of Muslim communities across the world at the Kuala Lumpur (KL) Summit 2019.

Foreign Minister Retno Marsudi who represented the Indonesian government at the summit said Indonesia has echoed the stance since the beginning

“We know a lot of challenges faced by Muslims. Let us work together to address the challenges,” she said at Grand Hyatt Hotel in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, on Wednesday (18/12/2019) night.

The cooperation to address the challenges faced by Muslims could be realized only if Muslim countries are united, she remarked.

Related news: Indonesian Vice President calls off plan to attend KL Summit

Indonesia hoped the KL Summit would send a peace message to all people in Islamic countries along with state guests that were present, she added.

“We know the objective of this KL Summit and the communication delivered by Malaysia is aimed at facing together the challenges faced by Muslims,” she explained..

Retno is scheduled to attend the opening of KL Summit 2019 at the Kuala Lumpur Convention Center (KLCC) on Thursday (Dec 19). At the opening ceremony of the summit, she will not deliver an official statement from the Indonesian government.

Vice President Ma’ruf Amin had originally been planned to attend the KL Summit 2019. But he cancelled the plan on Wednesday for health reasons.

“We announce that the vice president could not be present at the Kuala Lumpur Summit since the medical team came to the conclusion that the vice president must take rest,” the vice president’s special staff for communication and information, Masduki Baidlowi, said in a statement released on Wednesday (18/12/2019).

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INDONESIA STAYS AT FOURH RANKING IN MANILA’S 2019 SEA GAMES

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Indonesia stood fourth, while the Philippines contingent was ranked at the top of the medal tally, followed by Vietnam and Thailand.

Greatindonesia.co.id, New Clarck City – The Indonesian contingent secured 72 gold medals in the 30th SEA Games in Manila, the Philippines’ capital city, which concluded on Wednesday (11/12/2019).

Despite clinching more gold medals than the government’s earlier set target, the Indonesian contingent failed to come in the top two.

Instead, Indonesia stood fourth, while the Philippines contingent was ranked at the top of the medal tally, followed by Vietnam and Thailand.

President Joko Widodo (Jokowi) had earlier appealed to the athletes to perform to the best of their abilities to ensure Indonesia stood second in the medal tally of the multi-sport event that the Philippines hosted from November 30 to December 11.

“I want us to emerge as the second runner-up at the 30th SEA Games in the Philippines,” President Jokowi noted in his speech delivered at a ceremony to see off the Indonesian contingent at the Presidential Palace in Bogor, West Java, on Nov 27.

Jokowi noted that the Indonesian athletes were expected to boost their achievements in various international multi-sport events while acceding to the fact that it was no easy task.

However, with a robust fighting spirit and the support of 260 million Indonesians, the athletes should do their best to grab as many medals as possible at the Philippines 30th SEA Games, he emphasized.

The Indonesian athletes, who lately won 38 gold medals at the 2017 SEA Games in Kuala Lumpur, competed against those from the Philippines, Brunei Darussalam, Malaysia, Singapore, Thailand, Laos, Cambodia, Vietnam, Myanmar, and Timor Leste.

The following table shows the final medal tally of the 2019 SEA Games :

Rank State Gold Silver Bronze Total

1 Philippines 149 117 121 387
2 Vietnam 98 85 105 288
3 Thailand 92 103 123 318
4 Indonesia 72 84 111 267
5 Malaysia 55 58 71 184
6 Singapore 53 46 68 167
7 Myanmar 4 18 51 73
8 Cambodia 4 6 36 46
9 Brunei 2 5 6 13
10 Laos 1 5 28 34
11 Timor Leste 0 1 5 6

Total 530 528 725 1,783. (ant)

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JAPAN FULLY SUPPORTS PRESIDENT JOKOWI’S PRIORITY PROGRAMS

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President Jokowi on the sidelines of the 35th ASEAN Summit at the Impact Exhibition and Convention Center in Bangkok on Monday (4/11/2019).

Greatindonesia.co.id, Jakarta – Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe has vowed to fully support the priority programs of President Joko: Widodo (Jokowi) during his second term of office.

Abe was responding to the Indonesian government’s development programs unveiled during a bilateral meeting with President Jokowi on the sidelines of the 35th ASEAN Summit at the Impact Exhibition and Convention Center in Bangkok on Monday (4/11/2019).

At the meeting, President Jokowi unveiled the priority programs of his government in the next five years, including the development of quality human resources, the continuation of infrastructure development, and the simplification of government regulations and bureaucracy reform, Chief of the Press, Media and Information Bureau of the Presidential Secretariat Erlin Suastini said in a press statement.

“At this meeting, I would like to focus on two issues, namely cooperation in the development of infrastructures and the development of quality human resources,” Jokowi said.

Prime Minister Abe warmly welcomed the priority programs.

“Of course, Japan wants to cooperate in the fields which are the main priority, particularly infrastructure and human resource development ,” he said.

President Jokowi said the two countries have been engaged in many areas of cooperation in the infrastructure sector, including the construction of Jakarta Mass Rapid Transit (MRT) system, Jakarta-Surabaya semi-high-speed train and Patimban Port in West Java.

“Looking ahead, I also want to encourage the use of more local contents and the transfer of technology in our infrastructure development,” he said.

The development of infrastructure has been able to connect economic centers to one another in the outskirt areas of the country, he said.

To realize the cooperation in human resource development, Jokowi invited Japan to enhance its cooperation with Indonesia in the fields of vocation and internship. (ant)

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