ASEAN-US economic ties mutually beneficial: minister

ASEAN-US economic ties mutually beneficial: minister

Indonesian Foreign Minister Retno Marsudi (right) shakes hand with her US Secretary of State Mike Richard Pompeo (lefti) before holding a meeting in Jakarta on Saturday (Aug 4, 2018) (ANTARA Phoro/Hafidz Mubarak A)

Jakarta (ANTARA News) - Foreign Minister Retno Marsudi said economic ties especially in trade and investment, between ASEAN and the United States will benefit both sides.

The statement was given by Retno at a meeting of ASEAN and US foreign Ministers in Singapore, a news release said here on Saturday.

The Minister spoke about economic growth recorded by ASEAN countries , saying the average growth still exceeded 5 percent, indicating it is still potential to expand mutually beneficial trade between ASEAN and the United States.

She outlined to the US Foreign Minister Michael Richard Pompeo data about ASEAN-US trade in the past 10 years.

"US exports to ASEAN has increased significantly in the past 10 years. US investment in ASEAN was the fourth largest among foreign investments, but ASEAN also has big investment in the United States," Retno said.

At the meeting of ASEAN-US foreign ministers ASEAN appreciated the U.S. commitment to always involving ASEAN.

"We appreciate the US commitment to always engage ASEAN, and the appreciation was expressed by almost all ASEAN foreign ministers," Retno said.

The US Foreign Minister had said that the world`s largest economy would invest US$113 million or around Rp1.6 trillion in the sectors of technology, infrastructure and energy in the Indo - Pacific region as part of new strategy to strengthen its relations with the regional countries.

The statement was given by the US Foreign Minister before his visits to Indonesia, Singapore and Malaysia.

"The fund is only part of advance payment for a new era of U.S. economic commitment to creating peace and welfare in the Indo-Pacific region," Pompeo said addressing the US Chamber of Commerce.

Pompeo said the United States would be against all nations seeking to dominate Indo-Pacific region. The statement was a signal of threat apparently directed to Beijing, which has been in conflict against Washington over trade and shipping freedom in South China Sea.

Indo-Pacific emerged first as a diplomatic issues when U.S. President Donald Trump used the term during his Asian tour last year.

The Indo-Pacific concept was referred to coastal areas extending from the Indian Ocean to the Pacific Ocean that could be categorized as single geopolitical unity. Reported by Yuni Arisandy  

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