Chile and Indonesia pledge to complete FTA negotiations
2017-05-16 16:57:54   copyfrom:    hits:

Chilean president Michelle Bachelet and with her counterpart Joko Widodo (Foto: Gobierno de Chile)CHILETuesday, May

Chilean president Michelle Bachelet and with her counterpart Joko Widodo. (Foto: Gobierno de Chile)


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Tuesday, May 16, 2017, 01:40 (GMT + 9)


In Jakarta with her Indonesian counterpart, Joko Widodo, Chilean President Michelle Bachelet signed a letter of commitment to accelerate talks and conclude this year's negotiation of the Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement (CEPA) between the two countries.

"We hope that the CEPA negotiation, especially in trade and products, will conclude this year," Widodo said.

The Indonesian leader emphasized that Chile is Indonesia's third largest trading partner in South America, a potential non-traditional market for Indonesian products.

The Chilean government had been awaiting this announcement since 2014, when the first round of negotiations was held with a view to signing a free trade agreement.

Indonesia is the fourth most densely inhabited country in the world, with a market of 260 million inhabitants, and it is the only Southeast Asian nation, along with the Philippines, with which Chile has not developed commercial agreements, said the director of the Economic Relationship Directorate of the Chancellery (DIRECON), Paulina Nazal.

The trade volume between Indonesia and Chile was USD 227.15 million in 2016, and Indonesia's total exports accounted for USD 143.81 million, according to data from the Indonesian Ministry of Commerce.

For Chile, the trade balance between the two nations was a deficit of USD 93 million in 2016, according to official Chilean information.

Indonesia exports footwear, automotive products, products derived from palm oil and vegetable oil to Chile, and imports copper and fish feed from the South American country.

Nazal said the idea is not to insist on fruit and wine, but also to promote salmon, forest products "and try to make a slightly more sophisticated offer in manufactured products and chemical paste."

DIRECON director recalled that the first round of talks began in 2014, but negotiations "were frozen by them for two years."

"Resuming the talks is the priority objective, which we did now in March 2017 and will continue in a third round in June in Santiago," he added.

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