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Indonesia, Latin America explore business cooperation

5th July 2012 | 3.288 Views
Indonesia, Latin America explore business cooperation
Indonesian Trade Minister Gita Wirjawan (ANTARA News)
Jakarta (ANTARA News) - Indonesia and a number of Latin American countries will explore opportunities to cooperate within the investment and trade sectors of the Latin American and ASEAN regions, according to Indonesian Trade Minister Gita Wirjawan.

"We have received confirmations from Mexico, Colombia, Brazil, Venezuela, Argentina, Chile and Peru. The confirmations were made by ministers and heads of several institutions and investment-coordinating boards from a number of Latin American nations," Gita Wirjawan said here on Thursday.

He said that cooperation would be sought between the Indonesian ministry of trade and the Latin American ministries related to the economic affairs.

Speaking at a press conference, about a plan to host the ASEAN-Latin American Business Forum (ALBF), the minister said that a number of businesses had confirmed to attend the forum.

He said that many executives of major companies from the two regions would also be present in the event. Besides, the forum will also be attended by a number of businessmen from Singapore, Malaysia, Thailand, Vietnam and the Philippines.

The ALBF which will be held in Jakarta on July 9-10 will discuss trade and investment business opportunities in the ASEAN and Latin American region.

According to Gita Wirjawan, ASEAN and Latin American countries presented a potential for many business opportunities because the volumes of trade between the two regions were still quite small.

"Latin American countries have large volumes of trade with other countries totaling US$8.4 trillion. Unluckily however, the majority of their trade volumes are associated with non-ASEAN countries," the minister said.

He explained that the ASEAN side could offer many business initiatives to the Latin American nations since the ASEAN trade volumes with other countries were recorded at 2.5 trillion dollars with a gross domestic product of 3.3 - 3.5 trillion dollars.

A number of Latin American countries have joined the Trans-Pacific Partnership corridor to increase free trade among the nations, the minister explained.

With declining exports to Europe and the United States, a number of Latin American countries are looking for newer markets in the Southeast Asian region, particularly Indonesia in order to make investments and establish trade relations.

"They are also considering not depending too much on the United States and Europe as it`s predicted that in the coming tens of years, the Asian region will dominate the world economy. Therefore, the Latin American nations are willing to take anticipatory steps towards the Asian economy," the trade minister said.

According to plan, the ALBF will be opened by President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono on Monday morning and will be concluded by Chief Economic Minister Hatta Rajasa.

The forum will also be attended by a number of economic and trade ministers and president directors of a number major companies in the Southeast Asian and Latin American regions.