Jakarta, IORA – Indonesia has the opportunity to develop cooperation with the India Ocean Rim Association (IORA) member states in industrial sector, such as shipping and its equipment sector, marine products processing, automotive components, petrochemical, and coal gasification.
"We are boosting industrial investment because it is labor-intensive sector with export orientation and import substitution. To expand access to IORA member states' market, which are mostly non-traditional markets, can be conducted through the framework of bilateral supply chain cooperation, "said Industry Minister Airlangga Hartanto, after attending Business Summit in Jakarta Monday (3/6).
Industry Minister, through written statement, stated that another important measure to be taken is to initiate the implementation of business matching with IORA member states as well as to optimize the role of the embassies of the Republic of Indonesia in promoting national industry's capacities and market potential for both parties.
“Cooperation intensification such as trainings for industrial capacity building had been conducted with Mozambique and Seychelles in small and medium industrial sectors,” he explained.
Airlangga considered that economically Indian Ocean countries possessed immense and prospective economic potential such as a great market of 2.7 billion people. In addition, around 70% of global trade crossed this area, where 55% world oil reserve also 40% world gas reserve were stored.
Moreover, the countries in the area produce around 1/3 of world tuna production and store various mineral reserve with high economic value.
“With the various potentials, one of the measures to be taken by Indonesia is developing maritime infrastructure and connectivity as well as shipping and maritime industries,” he explained.
According to Airlangga, Indonesia, with its policy to realise the vision as the world maritime axis, was taking all efforts to become an influential country, both economically and politically between the Indian and the Pacific Ocean.
“For instance, Indonesia will protect and manage its marine resource by focusing in establishing marine food sovereignty through development of fisheries industry,” he said.
IORA is the largest interstate cooperation forum in the Indian Ocean established in 1997. IORA comprises 21 countries including Australia, South Africa, Bangladesh, Comoros, India, Indonesia, Iran, Kenya, Madagascar, Malaysia, Mauritius, Mozambique, Oman, Seychelles, Singapore, Somalia, Sri Lanka, Tanzania, Thailand, the United Arab Emirates and Yemen. IORA has 7 dialog partners namely the United States of America, the United Kingdom, Japan, German, Egypt, China and France.
Four IORA member states (South Africa, Australia, India and Indonesia) and six dialog partners (US, China, German, UK, Japan and France) are members of G20. It proves how strategic IORA is in global economy.
The IORA Summit 2017 is one of the Indonesia’s strategic ideas and initiatives as IORA Chair for the period of 2015-2017. The summit is convened under the theme “Strengthening Maritime Cooperation for a Peaceful, Stable and Prosperous Indian Ocean”.
Last year the total value of Indonesia’s trade with the IORA countries was USD 82.57 billion. Meanwhile, the IORA intra-regional trade in 2015 reached USD 777 billion or up to 300% compared to that of 1994 at USD 233 billion. Not only that, IORA also contributed such surplus to Indonesia’s trade. (Irvina Falah/Translator: AA)