Australia welcomes Indonesia`s plan to join TPP

Jakarta (ANTARA News) - Australia has welcomed Indonesias plan to join the Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP).

"We welcome Indonesia being part of the TPP," Australian Prime Minister, Malcolm Turnbull, said while visiting the Tanah Abang market in Central Jakarta with President Joko Widodo.

He said he had heard about President Widodo's visit to Washington and Indonesias plan to join the TPP.

Turnbull said if Indonesia decided to apply for the TPP membership, he would support it. "We will certainly support it."

President Widodo discussed with PM Turnbull a number of bilateral, regional and multilateral issues during a meeting held on Thursday.

He also said that given the geographical proximity of the two countries, as well as intensity of relations between the two countries, it would certainly increase the potential for friction between the two and in view of this he appreciated the Australian PMs visit to Indonesia as part of efforts to boost bilateral relations between the two countries.

President Widodo also welcomed Australias plan to open a consulate general office in Makassar, South Sulawesi.

He said he considered trade, investment and tourism cooperation between the two countries as important in view of their value.

Australias investment in Indonesia reached US$647.3 million in 226 projects, while Indonesias investment in Australia touched US$13 million and bilateral trade between the two is pegged at US$10.6 billion.

Indonesian tourists travelling to Australia reached 68,119, while the number of Australian tourists going to Indonesia totaled 1098,989, according to the records.

President Widodo said the sectors that could be developed for cooperation included infrastructure, connectivity development and food.

He added that a joint promotion for increasing tourism cooperation between the two countries had also been proposed at the meeting.(*)