Pekanbaru, Riau (ANTARA News) - Indonesia has always recorded a surplus in its trade with India and Pakistan thanks to ASEAN-India Free Trade Area (AIFTA), an international law expert said.
"With the AIFTA, it is not impossible (for Indonesia) to expand its trade relations with South Asian countries, including Sri Lanka, Pakistan, and Bangladesh," Dr. Evi Deliana HZ, LLM of University of Riau. stated here on Saturday.
She was responding to Indonesian President Joko Widodos five-South Asian nation tour, which took him to Sri Lanka, India, Pakistan, Afghanistan, and Bangladesh from Jan 24 to 28, 2018.
During the tour, Indonesia signed several cooperation agreements with Pakistan, Sri Lanka, and Bangladesh, particularly in the trade field.
With the agreements, Indonesia and the South Asian countries believed that the trade relations will give them mutual benefit, she remarked.
"Indonesia hopes that the cooperation will further expand the market for its exports to South Asia," she explained.
She added that the presidents visit also demonstrated the ever-increasingly closer relations between Indonesia and South Asian countries, particularly India.
Indonesia and India have special relations, particularly diplomatic and economic relations. India was among the countries which recognized Indonesia in the early days of its independence, she revealed.
"Almost all Indonesian presidents had paid state visits to India. In fact, when Soesilo Bambang Yudoyono took office (as the sixth Indonesian president), he visited India several times," she pointed out.
Source: ANTARA News