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Indonesia seeks more direct investment, trade from China to expand growth
2018-03-09
Brief:Indonesia is seeking more investors and trade improvement with China so as to attain higher growth, mutually benefit the two economies whose bilateral ties are in its most dynamic condition at present
Indonesia is seeking more investors and trade improvement with China so as to attain higher growth, mutually benefit the two economies whose bilateral ties are in its most dynamic condition at present, an Indonesian minister said here on Thursday.
 
Speaking in an exclusive interview at his office, Indonesian National Development Planning Minister Bambang Brodjonegoro said that by promoting bilateral cooperation, Indonesia and China would get concrete benefits.
 
Indonesia is now experiencing trade deficit with China, but at the same time China is expanding the consumption-side to boost growth, he said.
 
To address the deficit issue, Indonesia has offered to boost the export of biodiesel product considered relevant to China's green economy drive. Indonesia's biodiesel can replace China's fossil-based diesel fuel, particularly for its transportation sector, the minister said.
 
In the investment sector, Indonesia invites more Chinese investors to invest in its manufacturing and infrastructure sectors in Indonesia's provinces along the route of China-proposed Belt and Road Initiative, including Sumatra, Kalimantan, Sulawesi and Bali.
 
"The Chinese investors can establish partnership with (Indonesia's) domestic partners which already have the operation licenses, areas to carry out their investment operations there. So they won't need to take 100 percent efforts of their own to start their business there," the minister said.
 
The infrastructure projects offered for the Chinese private and state-owned investors in those Indonesian provinces consist of seaports, airports, industrial zones, power plants, toll roads and hospitality accommodations in the tourism sector.
 
In terms of manufacture investment, Indonesia expects Chinese investors capable of running smelters and other facilities to process raw commodities into value-added products, so as to eventually help improve the quality of Indonesia's export products as well as realize technology transfer over the process of production, Brodjonegoro said.
 
Should those projects be materialized, it would eventually give significant benefits to the Chinese investors as well as the economy and tourism sectors in the designated provinces.
 
"We can imagine that if they take part in those investments, we would eventually see North Sumatra, North Kalimantan and North Sulawesi become new growth centers. It would give significant economic opportunities for the country," he pointed out.
 
China overtook Japan to become Indonesia's second largest source of foreign direct investment (FDI) in 2017 with only Singapore ahead.
 
In the consumption sector, the minister said that Indonesia should export products needed most by Chinese consumers and tap more Chinese tourists to visit Indonesian destinations.
 
Indonesia has set tourism as a leading industry of the nation's economy, he noted. The Indonesian government is now intensifying efforts to develop the new ten destinations across the country, which are expected to par with foreign tourists' favorite destination of Bali.
 
"Indonesia has the world's fourth largest population whose economy and per capita income continue to grow," the minister said.
 
Indonesia posted a four-year high 5.07 percent growth last year. It has targeted to see a 5.4 percent growth this year and between 5.6 to 6 percent next year, he added.
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