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Seminar on Taiwan-Indonesia collaboration opens in Jakarta

Focus Taiwan News Channel, Taiwan

Seminar on Taiwan-Indonesia collaboration opens in Jakarta

By Nancy Liu and Flor Wang

14 December 2010

Jakarta, Indonesia, Dec. 14 (CNA) A second seminar on Taiwan-Indonesia collaboration opened in the Indonesian capital of Jakarta Tuesday to further explore bilateral ties on a wide front ranging from free trade agreements (FTAs) to challenges facing the media and technology sectors.

Andrew Hsia, representative of the Taipei Economic and Trade Office in Jakarta, said countries in Southeast Asia now have greater imperative to step up ties with Taiwan after the country clinched an economic cooperation framework agreement with China in June.

As cross-Taiwan Strait trade and tourism continues to grow based on improved bilateral relations since President Ma Ying-jeou took office in May 2008, many Southeast Asian countries now want to follow suit, because of the simple question: "If China can do it, why can’t we?" said Hsia.

At a time when these countries are seeking to forge FTAs with other countries, Taiwan must not allow this opportunity to slip though its fingers, said, Samuel C.Y. Ku, a professor at the Institute of China and Asia-Pacific Studies at National Sun Yat-sen University, who is one of the 15-member delegation from Taiwan attending the seminar.

The seminar is being hosted by the Indonesian news magazine Tempo, and Edy Putra Irawady, Indonesia’s deputy economic minister for trade and industry, attended the opening event.

Much of Taiwan’s investment in Indonesia is in metals, minerals and energy, but in the future, Taiwan should also become interested in Indonesia’s manufacturing and electronics products, Edy said.