Urdu Point - 05 December 2022
Eurasian Economic Union, Indonesia to start talks on free trade agreement - Commission
By Fahad Shabbir
The Eurasian Economic Union (EAEU) and Indonesia have agreed to launch negotiations on a free trade agreement, the first round is scheduled for the first quarter of 2023, the Eurasian Economic Commission (EEC) said on Monday.
"EEC Trade Minister Andrey Slepnev and Indonesian Trade Minister Zulkifli Hasan signed a joint statement on the launch of free trade agreement negotiations. The document, in particular, sets out an agreement to hold the first round of talks in the first quarter of 2023," the EEC said.
According to Slepnev, the EAEU attaches great importance to the development of mutually beneficial cooperation with Indonesia, which is one of the main trading partners in ASEAN and the Asia-Pacific region as a whole, the commission said.
"It is necessary to use the remaining untapped potential, as the study showed, the liberalization of trade conditions can increase trade by another $1.
5 billion," Slepnev said.
From January to September, the trade between the EAEU and Indonesia increased by 48.4% year-on-year, while exports surged by over 2.5 times, and imports rose by about 16%, according to the commission.
Slepnev noted that in addition to agricultural products, which traditionally make up most of the EAEU imports from Indonesia, there is potential for the industrial sphere.
The parties intend to promote cooperation between the business communities of the EAEU and Indonesia. A bilateral business dialogue is proposed to be held within the framework of the Eurasian Economic Forum next spring, Slepnev added.
The EAEU, which is made up of five former Soviet countries, is designed to ensure the free movement of goods, services and labor between member states implemented via common economic policies and regulation in the areas of industry, agriculture, energy, foreign trade and investment.