Jakarta (ANTARA) - Deputy for Macro Economy and Finance Coordination of the Coordinating Ministry for Economic Affairs Iskandar Simorangkir has pinned high hopes of deeper economic ties, including in trade and investment, with the United States.

Simorangkir made the statement in Jakarta on Tuesday after receiving the delegation of the United States-Association of South East Asian Nations Business Council (US-ABC), led by Senior Vice President and Regional Managing Director of US-ABC Ambassador Michael W. Michalak, on Tuesday.

The meeting was held to exchange views on ways to enhance more positive business to government (B2G) relations, prepare the scope of more competitive regulations, and create a business ecosystem of high quality in Indonesia.

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The United States is Indonesia's third-biggest trade partner next to China and Japan. Bilateral trade between the US and Indonesia was valued at US$28.6 billion in 2018, a 10.42-percent rise than that of the previous year, while US investment in Indonesia had reached $1.2 billion spread across 572 projects in Indonesia.

However, the figure did not concurrently mirror the vast potential for economic cooperation between both nations, including in the field of technology, he emphasized.

"Hence, to expand trade cooperation, we must focus on collaborative business undertakings to achieve the trade target of US$60 billion in five years' time, particularly in the field of complementary industry," he stated.

Currently, the Indonesian government is striving to increase trade and investment performance by adopting different strategies and providing privileges to foreign and domestic businessmen, he stated.

The measures include firstly, expanding the market for Indonesia's exports through the inking of trade agreements with trade partners, such as the European Union, Africa, and the ASEAN as well as six other countries, China, Japan, South Korea, India, Australia, and New Zealand; while secondly, eliminating regulations that can potentially impede investment inflows through the Omnibus Law to improve the investment climate in Indonesia; and thirdly, supporting the economy through structural reform beneficial to tackle the challenges of global technological disruption and the fourth industrial revolution, Industry 4.0.
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Translator: Satyagraha/Suharto
Editor: Rahmad Nasution
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