RI signs 146 int`l agreements during 2011

18 January, 2012 | Source: ANTARA News

Jakarta (ANTARA News) - Indonesia signed a total of 146 international agreements during 2011, a Foreign Affairs Ministry official said.

"During 2011, Indonesia signed 146 agreements comprised of 131 bilateral , nine ASEAN-related and six multilateral accords," PLE Priatna, the ministry`s director for information and media affairs, said here Wednesday.

Priatna said Indonesia also signed a total of 149 Memorandums of Understanding (MoUs) with other countries, namely 96 in the economic and 53 in the security and legal fields during 2011.

Last Tuesday (Jan 17) during a meeting between Foreign Affairs Minister Marty Natalegawa with members of the House of Representatives from Commission I handling security and international affairs, Chairman of Commission I Mahfudz Siddiq expressed appreciation for the government`s achievements in the diplomatic sector.

However, the Tuesday meeting also highlighted the need for the government to improve economic diplomacy and coordination with related ministries.

Recently Foreign Affairs Minister Marty Natalegawa in a new year speech stated that Indonesian representative offices abroad were expected to expand the country`s export market in order to achieve the 2012 export value target of US$ 230 billion.

"The Ministry of Foreign Affairs has also instructed all of Indonesia`s overseas representative offices to actively help attract foreign investments that will benefit the Indonesian economy in accordance with the Master Plan for the Acceleration and Expansion of Indonesia`s Economic Development (MP3EI)," said the minister.

Marty added Indonesian representative offices abroad must also contribute to the attainment of the country`s 8 million foreign tourist arrivals target for 2012.

He also said in 2011 Indonesia had signed 146 international agreements, 131 of which were bilateral agreements. Indonesia also had ratified 26 agreements. Close to 90 percent of the agreements were bilateral, and more than 60 percent were in the economic sector.

"Economic diplomacy is an integral part of Indonesia`s bilateral diplomacy. Efforts to enhance economic, trade and investment relations with other countries are one of the priorities of Indonesian diplomacy, in order to support national development and economic growth and to enhance the welfare of our people," said Marty.

The minister acknowledged that Indonesian embassies abroad during 2011 had tried to deepen and expand Indonesia`s traditional markets while at the same time trying to identify and develop non-traditional markets.

"We have all witnessed and harvested the outcome. Throughout 2011, for instance, Indonesia`s bilateral trade volumes with almost all countries increased compared to the figures in 2010. For example, the trade volumes with 13 countries with which we have strategic partnerships saw sharp increases, above 50 percent on average," he said.


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