The signing marks our powerful commitment on multilateralism,
Jakarta (ANTARA) - Indonesian President Joko Widodo (Jokowi) said that the signing of Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) on Sunday has demonstrated the commitments of peace and stability as well as prosperity within the region.

During the 4th RCEP Summit held virtually, President Jokowi stated that the signing was a historical moment as its process took nearly a decade after being initiated in 2011, and the first round of negotiation was conducted in 2013.

"The signing marks our powerful commitment on multilateralism," Jokowi remarked.

This regional pact that becomes the world's biggest trade agreement covering a market of around 2.2 billion people or 30 percent of the world's population has officially been signed by 10 ASEAN member countries along with their five partners -- China, South Korea, Japan, Australia, and New Zealand.

Jokowi emphasized that all the member states feel the same way about the uneasy process to achieve RCEP. But, again, a strong commitment has made it all possible, he added.

The pact would also intensify the principle of an open, fair and benefited all-sides multilateral commerce. Furthermore, this provides hope and optimistic view on economic recovery for post-pandemic era throughout the region.

"It is indeed an honour for Indonesia to be a country coordinator for the long process (of RCEP dialogue). Therefore, I would like to extend my gratitude and appreciation for every support and constructive contribution from all countries during the negotiation," Jokowi said.

However, President Jokowi emphasized that this Sunday's signing was only a beginning as every single states involved should put their efforts to manage it, and Indonesia is open for other countries to later join this pact.

"This also needs out political will on the highest level. And Indonesia--we welcome other countries in the region that are willing to join RCEP," he said.

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Translator: Indra Arief Pribadi, Suwanti
Editor: Rahmad Nasution
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