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Anand Sharma hopes India Indonesia trade target to hit US 25 billion dollar by 2015


March 7, 2012 - Jakarta

The Union Minister for Commerce, Industry and Textiles Anand Sharma has said India and Indonesia will reach target trade worth US 25 billion dollars by 2015 ahead of schedule.

Sharma who reviewed the business ties between the two countries with his counterparts in Jakarta, said: "We now see ourselves achieving the next target of US 25 billion by 2015 comfortably. With the implementation of India-ASEAN FTA by us since October last year, the trade and investment flows between our countries would accelerate and would help achieve and exceed the target easily."

Both sides have agreed to speed up negotiations on bilateral Comprehensive Economic Cooperation Agreement (CECA).

Sharma emphasized the need for Indonesia to improve its offer on services in the context of the Indian ASEAN FTA in services and investment.

Sharma also pushed for movement of professionals under mode IV both in context of India-ASEAN FTA as well as further investment opportunities in future.

"Opening up the two economies for service trade would be a win-win situation for both the countries," Sharma added.

Indonesia, at present, does not allow movement of professionals in health and banking sector.

Indonesian Minister for Trade Gita Wirjawan, in response, has agreed to take up these issues with the Health department and the Central Bank of Indonesia.

Sharma also flagged important issues relating to the non-tariff barriers for Indian pharmaceutical sector and the import of bovine meat into Indonesia.

The Indonesian minister acknowledged that it was important for Indonesia to have more open regime for trade and investment in all three sectors as this would benefit Indonesian consumers by bringing down prices and providing opportunities for investments from India.

Sharma also raised the issue of new mining laws and certain new regulations that have affected Indian mining and IPPs in Indonesia.

Indian mining companies are obliged to export coal at benchmarked prices announced monthly by the Ministry of Industry in Jakarta. This has upset the calculations of a large number of IPPs who had submitted bids in India for power projects assuming certain (lower than benchmark) pricing of coal on the basis of coal mines operated by them in Indonesia. The Indonesia trade minister responded favorably to Sharma's request for the review of the policy.

In order to further the economic cooperation both side decided to institute new working groups in the fields of health care, pharmaceuticals, bio-technology, mininggro-processing, food processing, research, development and technology and skill training.

Sharma also inaugurated the India show in which 72 companies, representing large corporate to SMEs, of India ranging from agro-processing, manufacturing and mining to other sectors were participating.

Bilateral trade between India and Indonesia has been US 20.136 billion dollars in 2011 while it was US 14.128 billion dollars in 2010. India-Indonesia bilateral trade has grown at a robust compounded annual growth rate of about 30 percent over the last 5 years.

Sharma also met with Hatta Rajasa the coordinating Minister for Economy and Mohammed Hidayat, Minister of Industry in Jakarta during his visit.

ANI

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