Wed, 15 Dec 2010

Surabaya, East Java (ANTARA News) - President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono has called on all economic stakeholders to prioritize the domestic market including inter-island and inter-province trade.

"We must admit that equal distribution has not yet been optimally achieved and therefore businesses must not always be export-oriented because the 230 million population is also a market," he said at a general lecture at the Surabaya Institute of Technology (ITS) here on Tuesday.

Before ITS students, lecturers, employees and a number of regional officials, Yudhyono said regional sectors and domestic funding sources had to be put into consideration.

"In the future debts will be continuously reduced while the debt ratio to the Gross Domestic Product must be maintained to avoid a deficit. Defense indusry must also become self-sufficient," he said.

The president said the government would not resort to market mechanism fully but would maintain the market mechanism.

"So we will not submit to market mechanism like in a capitalist economy but the government will still play a role to maintain the market so that no confusion will happen between market economy and the government`s role," he said.

President Yudhoyono who was once an ITS student in 1969 before moving to the AKABRI (armed forces academy) said Indonesia would choose an economic system which is an eco-social market economy.

"We wish to have a strong economy with growth reaching 6 to 7 percent, balanced among islands, enjoyable by both the rich and the poor and which is environment friendly," he said.

With the choice, he said, it is believed Indonesia will become an advanced country in the 21st century and although the century is to end in 90 years` time progress should happen before the period ends.

"Our target is in 15 years` time there will be progress not only in the eocnomic field but also in competitiveness and inovation, legal and social justice system, defense and international diplomacy," he said.

President Yudhoyono said the ideal was not impossible to achieve but would be fought jointly involving all national elements.

Emphasizing that the goal was not impossible to meet Yudhoyono referred as examples to the conflict in Aceh that could finally end peacefully after 30 years or the global crisis that could be finally overcome and the latest one the country`s football team that has proven to have the potentials to advance (the team has to people`s surprise been able to advance to semi-finals at the current ASEAN Football Federation championship).

At the event attended by a number of cabinet ministers President Yudhoyono also referred to positive reports about the country from a number of foreign institutions including the Foreign Policy Magazine, the Economics magazine, the World Economic Forum report, the annual reports on global competitiveness for 139 countries, the OECD and others.(*)