Doorstop regarding the Indonesia-Australia Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement

  • Transcript, E&OE
Intercontinental, Sydney
06 November 2016

STEVEN CIOBO: It's terrific to have the chance to meet with theIndonesian Trade Minister, Minister Lukita, this afternoon with this delegationfrom Indonesia. A very clear sign that notwithstanding the unfortunate need forPresident Widodo to postpone his trip to Australia, both Australia andIndonesia remain very committed toward taking this relationship from strengthto strength. And also the very solid progress we've made with respect to theAustralia-Indonesia Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement. Discussionsare ongoing. There is a lot of good will on both sides, and of course there'shuge untapped potential, both between Australia and Indonesia. And that reallyunderscores why both Australia and Indonesia are very committed to thisprocess. The meeting today went very well. Very warm and cordial. MinisterLukita and I have met on a number of occasions now and we're progressing ourdiscussions and those negotiations very well. Still very committed toconcluding, we hope, by the end of next year. We also took the opportunitytoday to have discussions in relation to the live cattle trade. I was verypleased Indonesia has confirmed that there will not be a quota for animals outof Australia, and that they'll be also happy to have annual permits for livecattle exports from Australia. Very good news for Australian industry. We'regoing to continue to work together to also help Indonesia boost their domesticbreeding stock of cattle. This is of course value for Indonesia and it's onethat Australia of course brings a lot of knowledge and a lot of ability to thetable. And I'm very confident we'll be able to work together for an effectiveoutcome around live cattle exports as well. Questions?

JOURNALIST: Do you expect that the live cattle trade willincrease with this new deal?

STEVEN CIOBO: We're working together to make sure thatIndonesia's need for increased beef cattle and Australia's desire of course, tobe able to sell more beef cattle is in a position that's going to produce awin-win outcome. Shifting to annual permits and having no quota will definitelybe advantageous for Australian exports but this really is about achieving awin-win outcome. And so I'm confident that by working together, we'll be ableto do just that.

JOURNALIST: So Australia is, population-wise, comparatively avery small country, very small market compared to Indonesia. What can they getfrom us? What's in it for them?

STEVEN CIOBO: For Indonesia?


STEVEN CIOBO: In relation to live cattle or more broadly?

JOURNALIST: No, more broadly. In trade.

STEVEN CIOBO: Sure. Australia of course is different measures -we're the 12th-largest economy in the world. We have a very mature, developedeconomy. We generate a lot of intellectual property, we've got a lot of goodtechnical skills and knowledge here in Australia. We're able to share that witha country like Indonesia, a country which of course, is rapidly growing. Acountry which has very strong focus on building a capacity for their domesticpopulation. We're very focused in particular on services exports fromAustralia, opportunities in relation to tourism, in relation to education, aswell as what we're doing in our traditional markets like agriculture and livecattle exports, for example. All of that, very important export industries forAustralia and highly regarded by the Indonesians.

JOURNALIST: Have you brought up, or any of your colleaguesbrought up the possibility of Indonesia taking refugees from our offshoreprocessing centres?

STEVEN CIOBO: I haven't, no.

JOURNALIST: And what industries do you hope will be some ofthe first to take up trade under this new deal?

STEVEN CIOBO: I continue to see an expansion of tradeopportunities between Australia and Indonesia. In many respects, that'sprecisely why we want to put in place a high quality, commercially meaningfulagreement between Australia and Indonesia. This is why we are undergoingnegotiations now, and I'm very hopeful that with the successful conclusion ofnegotiations, we hope around the middle to end of next year, we'll be wellplaced to see the economic relationship between Australia and Indonesia go fromstrength to strength. Thanks everybody.


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