TEMPO.CO, Jakarta - Here are the background information of the Indonesia - Africa Forum (IAF):
The Indonesia-Africa Forum (IAF) is Indonesia's first ever historic forum to bring together the governments, businesses and stakeholders of Indonesia and Africa to jointly explore potential economic cooperation, strengthen technical cooperation and enhance long-standing cooperation.
The highest level invited is the ministerial level, but the IAF is not a ministerial meeting and addresses the strategic issues that emerge between Indonesia and Africa.
IAF will be held at Bali Nusa Dua Convention Center on 10-11 April 2018.
Under Joko Widodo, Indonesia established IAF to realize the Indonesia-Africa political closeness built since the Asian-African Conference of 1955 to a real economic closeness.
In addition, the implementation of the IAF is also an implementation of the Indonesian President's direction to focus on penetrating non-traditional markets such as Africa.
Implementation of IAF 2018 is intended as a show case and concrete economic cooperation platform of Indonesia with African countries, among others by:
a. Signing business deals and announcement of business contracts and other concrete cooperation.
b. Increased training and technical cooperation to the African region.
c. To be the platform of Indonesia's economic diplomacy strategy in 2019, one of them is by organizing Indonesia-Africa Infrastructure Dialogue in August / September 2019.
4.Series of activities and composition of participants
The IAF is planned to be held at the Bali Nusa Dua Convention Center (BNDCC) on 10-11 April 2018 (The tentative of complete agenda is attached).
a. Series of Activities
-10 April: Opening by the President of Indonesia, signing Business Deals, photo sessions, visits to industry fairs, and discussion panels: policymakers' perspectives.
-11 April: Indonesia-Africa Business Forum (opened by Vice President), press conference by Foreign Minister, Minister of Trade and Chairman of KADIN RI (Indonesian Chamber of Commerce and Industry).
Note: There will also be an exhibition of Indonesian industry and Technical Cooperation of Indonesia to Africa during IAF implementation.
b. The IAF participants consist of approximately 550 people consisting of:
- Foreign participants consisting of government delegations and businesspeople from 53 African countries as well as panelists from international organizations (African Union, UN Economic Commission for Africa and World Bank)
- Indonesian participants consisting of ministers of Indonesia, SOEs, KADIN and entrepreneurs.
5.Issues to be Discussed
Indonesia and Africa have strong economic growth and a demographic of young and productive people, ideal conditions to create stronger economic cooperation. In 2017, Indonesia-Africa bilateral trade reached USD 8.84 billion, an increase of 13.6% over last year. Considering these potentials, economic diplomacy needs to be strengthened, among others through innovation, dialogue and consultation.
As a developing country, Indonesia and Africa can benefit from infrastructure development. Indonesia continues to increase its efforts to increase infrastructure development including through allocation of USD 353 billion for this sector until 2019. As for Africa, Infrastructure development has been key to progress, productivity and growth.
Indonesia has been involved in infrastructure investment in Africa, particularly in the Algerian housing project and is exploring infrastructure cooperation in various projects in Niger, Mozambique and others.
Indonesia and Africa have abundant oil and gas reserves and coal. Almost 30% of global oil and gas findings in the last five years are in the Sub-Saharan Africa. The key challenge for Indonesia and Africa is to ensure the availability of reliable and affordable energy and the development of new and renewable energy.
Agriculture is an important sector for both parties. Indonesia is a major producer of several major commodities such as palm oil. For Africa, agriculture accounts for 60% of jobs in the region and over 50% of GDP in some African countries. A special focus on this is the identification of challenges and solutions for the development of agricultural products such as palm oil.
e.Technical Cooperation (KST)
The technical cooperation discussion emphasizes the principle of Indonesia's engagement with Africa that not only focuses on economic benefits, but also to create partnerships for mutual progress.
In 2010, Indonesia has established a National Coordinating Team to coordinate South-South Cooperation as part of the International Assistance Program of Indonesia. Since 2006, Indonesia has provided 96 KSTT programs with a total of 780 participants from African countries.
Financing is a major component of trade and investment cooperation. Indonesia is always looking for innovative ways to strengthen economic ties with Africa. One of them is that Indonesia has implemented National Interest Account (NIA) to increase export and investment to non-traditional markets including Africa. Under the NIA, the government allocated 1.3 trillion rupiah to finance trade with Africa until 2022.
Indonesian SOEs play an important role in increasing trade and investment with Africa. The main activities of these SOEs are specialized in the field of strategic industries and construction. Currently, Indonesia's trade with Africa in this sector reaches a significant amount, which is dominated by aircraft, construction, rail and ship transactions.
Currently there are approximately 25 Indonesian companies in Africa and look forward to more, including through SME cooperation.
The entry of the digital economy as a topic of discussion reflects the fact that Indonesia and Africa are well positioned to benefit from rapid technological change to promote growth and beyond the limits of physical infrastructure.
Indonesia's economy is slowly moving toward digitalization with Indonesian internet users increasing from 92 million to 215 million by 2020. While in Africa, internet penetration is expected to reach at least 50% by 2020 from just 2% in 2010. Indonesia and Africa need to seek a likelihood of forming a joint venture platform to finance start-up cooperation between the two parties.
Connectivity is important for Indonesia and Africa. Better connectivity between Indonesia and Africa will certainly enhance tourism cooperation and create a spill over effect to other areas of cooperation. Recently, Ethiopian Airlines attempted to open its inaugural flight from Addis Ababa to Jakarta which is expected to become a hub for Indonesia's connectivity to other African regions.
6. Deliverables IAF
IAF is expected to produce:
- The signing of business between RI and Africa, including the sale of CN-235 aircraft PT. Dirgantara Indonesia in Senegal and Ivory Coast.
- In the IAF it is also hoped that there will be a commitment to increase technical cooperation and scholarships to African countries.