IUAE-CEPA, Indonesia’s First Trade Negotiations with Gulf Countries

Jakarta, MINA – New history for Indonesia and the United Arab Emirates (UAE) after the two countries carried out the first round of trade negotiations of the Indonesia-UAE Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement (IUAE-CEPA), which took place on 2 -4 September 2021 in Bogor, West Java.

The cooperation agreement was carried out after the official launch of the IUAE-CEPA negotiations by the Indonesian Minister of Trade, Muhammad Lutfi and the PEA State Minister for Foreign Trade Thani bin Ahmed Al Zeyoudi on Thursday.

“The results of the first round of negotiations will be followed up with technical and intercession meetings to discuss potential cooperation that can be carried out, for example in terms of support for small and medium industries, electronic commerce, and the development of the halal industry,” said Trade Minister Lutfi in his written statement on Monday.

The IUAE-CEPA negotiations are a new history as Indonesia’s first bilateral trade negotiations with Gulf countries.

The IUAE-CEPA is an important effort by both countries to increase trade and investment amidst the economic recovery during the COVID-19 pandemic.

The implementation of this negotiation has also been reported to the President of the Republic of Indonesia Joko Widodo (Jokowi) by the two Ministers during the courtesy visit of Minister Thani Al Zeyoudi, at the Merdeka Palace, Jakarta on Friday.

“The President of the Republic of Indonesia very positively welcomes the start of the CEPA negotiations between the two countries and hopes that the IUAE-CEPA negotiations can be completed within one year,” said the Minister of Trade.

He assessed that this trade agreement is something very important and is part of Indonesia’s window to export to non-traditional destination countries, such as in Africa and the Arabian Peninsula.

“We will conclude this agreement at the first opportunity, not later than one year. Hopefully, on November 4, when the President’s visit to the UAE, this agreement is almost finished or can even be finalized,” he added.

UAE is one of the destination countries for Indonesia’s export market towards international in the Middle East region. Meanwhile for the UAE, the IUAE-CEPA is the first bilateral trade negotiation with its trading partners in the Asian region.

The total trade between Indonesia and UAE in 2020 was recorded at 2.93 billion US Dollars (US), with the value of Indonesia’s exports to the PEA being US $1.24 billion and imports of US $1.68 billion.

Indonesia’s main export commodities to UAE include palm oil, jewelry, iron tubes and pipes, cars and motor vehicles, and synthetic woven fabrics.

Meanwhile, Indonesia’s main import commodities from UAE include semi-finished products of iron or steel, acyclic hydrocarbons, unwrought aluminum, colloidal precious metals, and propylene polymers. (T/RE1)

Mi’raj News Agency (MINA)