MINSK, 13 November (BelTA) – The task set by the government to increase Belarus-Indonesia trade up to $1 billion is absolutely achievable in the near term, Deputy Chairman of the Belarusian Chamber of Commerce and Industry Sergei Nabeshko told reporters on 13 November, BelTA has learned.
In 2018, bilateral trade exceeded $227 million, up 63% over 2017. According to Sergei Nabeshko, this growth is unprecedented. “The government set a task to hit the $1 billion target. We believe that we are well positioned to achieve this goal in the near-term perspective,” he added. He did not specify the period when this will happen. “We are interested not only in sales, but also in cooperation, localization, and strategic partnerships,” he noted.
Indonesia is one of strategic markets for Belarus. “It is the fourth biggest importer of Belarusian potassium chloride (the biggest importers are Brazil, China and India). It is a stable source of foreign currency revenues,” he informed.
Indonesia is showing huge interest in Belarusian mechanical engineering companies. “BelAZ ships a lot of products there. A factory to assemble MAZ machines opened in Vietnam this year. Localization will certainly allow us to secure our foothold in the entire ASEAN region. Our dairy producers believe that the Indonesian market holds a lot of promise, although they will have to challenge their competitors from New Zealand and Australia who are very active on this market,” Sergei Nabeshko said.
Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the Republic of Indonesia to the Russian Federation (accredited to the Republic of Belarus) Mohamad Wahid Supriyadi told reporters that he had a meeting at the Belarusian Ministry of Foreign Affairs on 13 November. He informed that Indonesia is about to appoint a diplomat who will permanently reside in Belarus. “This diplomat will report to the Indonesian Embassy in Russia, but he will be based in Belarus. We believe that this will make more sense than opening a diplomatic mission,” the diplomat said.
The participants of the meeting at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs also discussed ways to energize cooperation in trade and investment.
Mohamad Wahid Supriyadi believes that potential of bilateral cooperation is inexhaustible. “I believe that once we start holding more business events, business people of the two countries will find more areas of common interest that will be later translated into joint projects in trade. As far as Indonesia is concerned, we can supply fish products, various types of special equipment, fruit and electronic equipment,” the diplomat said.
Minsk is hosting the Belarus-Indonesia business forum on 13 November. The forum has been arranged by the Belarusian Chamber of Commerce and Industry jointly with the Indonesian Embassy in the Russian Federation. Taking part in the event are over 30 companies and organizations of the two countries. The participants of the forum will discuss cooperation prospects, business rules and regulations in Indonesia, as well as business climate and trade and economic opportunities in Belarus. Representatives of the Belarusian and Indonesian business communities will discuss possible partnerships in agriculture, food production, pharmaceutics and exhibition activities.