AMERICA.GOV/Indonesia, United States Discuss Trade and Investment
Washington - The United States and Indonesia concluded a two-day meeting in Indonesia on October 2 under the bilateral trade and investment framework agreement (TIFA), reviewing in detail the comprehensive agenda between the two countries.
The 2007 expansion of the U.S.-Indonesia TIFA, originally signed in 1996, represents significant bilateral cooperation and serves as a mechanism for dialogue. It is also the basis for exploratory talks on a bilateral investment treaty and an updated investment incentive agreement.
Chaired by Indonesia’s Ministry of Industry and Trade and the Office of the United States Trade Representative (USTR), bilateral working groups under the TIFA focused on intellectual property rights, agriculture, services and investment.
Indonesia’s participation in these bilateral discussions is a step toward achieving the so-called Bogor goals, which seek to establish an open multilateral trade and investment system among all 21 Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) member economies. The goals were established at Bogor, Indonesia, in 1994, and were reaffirmed during the 2009 APEC Economic Leaders’ Meeting.
At the October meeting, the United States welcomed the progress made in the past year in addressing some bilateral issues and discussed steps to resolve the many remaining concerns. The two nations also exchanged views on potential initiatives to expand the bilateral economic relationship and on cooperating closely in APEC, which the United States hosts in 2011, and in the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN), which Indonesia chairs in 2011.
The TIFA meeting was co-chaired by Assistant USTR Barbara Weisel and Indonesian Ministry of Trade Special Assistant Halida Miljani. The U.S. team also included representatives from the departments of Agriculture, Commerce, State and Homeland Security, and the U.S. Agency for International Development.
During the meeting, the United States raised a range of concerns relating to Indonesian market access restrictions in the agriculture, manufacturing, pharmaceuticals, telecommunications and express delivery sectors, as well as developments on intellectual property rights and the future work program on their joint initiative on illegal logging and associated trade.
The two nations also discussed ongoing programs of cooperation on clean energy and other U.S. technical assistance as well as efforts to build trade capacity.
Two-way goods trade between the United States and Indonesia totaled $18 billion in 2009, and services trade totaled $2 billion, according to USTR. In the first seven months of 2010, bilateral trade has grown steadily, with U.S. exports to Indonesia up 45 percent over the previous year. U.S. foreign direct investment in Indonesia exceeded $16 billion in 2009, much of it concentrated in the energy sector. (This is a product of the Bureau of International Information Programs, U.S. Department of State. Web site: http://www.america.gov)