Minister to expand export market to improve trade balance

Yogyakarta, (ANTARA News) - Trade Minister Enggartiasto Lukita affirmed he will expand Indonesias export market to improve the trade balance that was still in deficit until the end of 2018.

"For exports, we have opened new markets, and we will still conduct trade agreements," Lukita noted while visiting the "Omo! Healthy Snack" factory on Jalan Magelang here on Thursday.

The trade minister said Indonesias trade balance until the end of 2018 is still in deficit, as exports have decreased, while the imports of raw materials had, in fact, increased.

Although both export-oriented and domestic markets have experienced a sharp increase, the machines used are still imported from abroad, the minister pointed out.

"Our exports are declining, and the purchasing power of the world is also decreasing. The construction of our infrastructure is extraordinary, but consequently, the import of capital goods has also increased," he noted.

Lukita said the export activity of palm oil is currently experiencing the biggest correction owing to the high cost still incurred in palm oil entering the region.

"The correction in palm oil is rather sharp, especially to India and Europe. India has hiked import duties to 45 percent, or three times the increase. I have spoken with the Indian trade minister," he noted.

Lukita admitted to not being too hesitant and concerned about the economic condition since he along with Minister of Industry Airlangga Hartarto had constantly monitored to see the extent of development of the Indonesian industry in future.

To reduce the trade balance deficit, he noted that the Ministry of Trade had opened new export markets and entered into trade agreements with various countries.

"Cooperation with Australia is just a matter of time. Starting January 2019, hopefully, (cooperation will be forged) with Mozambique and Tunisia, followed by Morocco," he added.

Source: ANTARA News

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