President Seeks Help from Universities to Assess TPP

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  • TEMPO.CO, Yogyakarta - President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo asked academicians from universities to provide their point of views related to advantages and drawbacks of Indonesia joining international trade forums such as the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP).

    “It’s a job for universities to weigh the advantages and disadvantages [of joining international trade forum]. We shouldn’t jump to conclusions,” President Jokowi said when opening the Indonesian Rectors Forum’s (FRI) national conference at the Yogyakarta State University on Friday, January 29, 2016.

    According to Jokowi, there are risks involved for each decision whether to join or not to join the Trans Pacific Partnership and the European Free Trade Association (EFTA). Therefore, Jokowi said, such a decision must be considered carefully.

    “I will decide whether we should join [international trade forums] in the near future after weighing the advantages and disadvantages,” Jokowi said.

    Jokowi hopes that public will not jump to conclusion that joining the international trade forums will incur losses to Indonesia. Jokowi revealed that several ASEAN countries, such as Brunei Darussalam and Vietnam, had decided to join with the TPP.

    In addition to providing the government with recommendations, Jokowi added, universities could also help with improving public characters before deciding to join the forum.

    The FRI was scheduled to be held on January 29-30, 2016. In addition to Jokowi, attending the conference were State Secretary Pratikno, Research, Technology and Higher Education Minister M. Nasir, Communication and Information Minister Rudiantara, Home Affairs Minister Tjahjo Kumolo and Yogyakarta Governor Sri Sultan Hamengkubuwono X.