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Indonesia Seeks Netherlands Support for IEU-CEPA

7 May 2024 12:19 WIB

Illustration of an export and import container ship at Tanjung Priok Port, Jakarta. Tempo/Tony Hartawan

TEMPO.CO, JakartaThe governments of Indonesia and the Netherlands have agreed to engage in discussions concerning the continuation of the Indonesia-European Union Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement (IEU-CEPA).

“The leaders of Indonesia and the European Union (EU) have concurred to finalize these negotiations by the end of this year,” Deputy Trade Minister Jerry Sambuaga said in a written statement on Monday, May 6.

According to him, Coordinating Minister for Economic Affairs Airlangga Hartanto met with the Dutch Deputy Prime Minister Karien Van Gennip on Friday, May 3, during which both parties agreed to maintain a constructive approach.

“We conveyed in the meeting that Indonesia appreciates the support of the Netherlands and hopes that the EU will offer a progressive commitment to expedite the completion of the IEU-CEPA,” said Jerry.

He explained that the meeting, which was held on the sidelines of the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) Ministerial Level Meeting in Paris, France, aimed to create a more transparent and impartial trading environment for Indonesia and the EU. 

The IEU-CEPA negotiation process has lasted 17 rounds since 2016, with 11 of the 21 chapters completed. Jerry opined that the negotiations require bold steps to complete the remaining 10 chapters. The 18th round of the negotiations was scheduled for mid-May 2024 in Brussels, Belgium, hosted by the EU.

Jerry said that Indonesia also appreciated the Netherlands' robust support for Indonesia's accession process to the OECD. An OECD membership is the government’s strategic priority to achieve the vision of a Golden Indonesia 2045.

Indonesia, he went on, is steadfast in meeting all the requirements. “Indonesia also expressed its desire to learn and gain knowledge from the Netherlands on Indonesia's readiness and what aspects Indonesia needs to strengthen in order to complete the accession process,” he said.

Meanwhile, Deputy Prime Minister of the Netherlands, Karien Van Gennip, appreciated Indonesia's commitment and expressed willingness to support the accession to the OECD. "We can also share experiences and best practices in conducting domestic structural reforms,” she said.

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