Jakarta (ANTARA) - Indonesia and Japan will seek to improve cooperation in the manufacturing sector through strategic measures and the realization of commitments made at bilateral and regional forums.

In the near future, one of the agendas that the two countries will focus on is the completion of the protocol for amendments to the Indonesia-Japan Economic Partnership Agreement (IJ-EPA), which would be announced by their heads of state at the G20 Summit in November 2022 in Bali.

“We will open broader access and offer more substantive ones in relation to trade in goods negotiations related to manufactured products. We hope that this will be mutually beneficial for both parties," Industry Minister Agus Gumiwang Kartasasmita said in a statement issued in Jakarta on Thursday.

There are several issues that are still being negotiated for the IJ-EPA collaboration, including trade of goods, services, economic cooperation, the movement of natural persons, and the rule of origin.

They further comprise issues pertaining to industry, the implementation of the new MIDEC program, and improved offers for steel products.

The Industry Ministry said it is expecting support from the Japanese Minister of Economy, Trade, and Industry (METI) for the agenda of the Indonesian G20 Presidency to include the topic of industrial sustainability in G20 discussions.

The Indonesian government proposed this inclusion during the 2022 Trade, Investment, and Industry Working Group (TIIWG), and said it expected that the discussions on industry issues would be carried out consistently during the next Presidency.

In the Zero Draft Ministerial Statement on Trade, Investment, and Industry, which was distributed to G20 members, Indonesia proposed an alternative to the Industry Working Group as a forum for discussing industrial issues during the next Presidency.

During a meeting with Coordinating Minister for Economic Affairs Airlangga Hartarto, and the Industry Minister in Jakarta last week, the newly inaugurated Japanese Minister of Economy, Trade, and Industry (METI), Nishimura Yasutoshi, commended the Indonesian G20 Presidency and expressed support for pushing the discussion on industrial issues.

In addition, Indonesia is expecting support from Japan to accelerate the achievement of zero emissions through collaboration in innovative technologies, such as hydrogen and ammonia technology.

"In addition, it is also expected that the support of new Japanese knowledge and technology to support several strategic projects in Indonesia, particularly for the downstreaming of natural commodities, the development of electric cars and motorcycles, as well as the health and food sector," he added.

The Industry Minister also lauded the commitment of Japanese automotive companies that have continued to increase their investment in Indonesia, for instance, Mitsubishi, which was committed to increasing investment in new models, including hybrid vehicles, and Toyota, which will make huge investments to produce electric vehicles.

In addition to the automotive sector, Sojitz Corporation's plan to build a methanol industry in Bintuni Bay, West Papua, was also discussed during the meeting.

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Translator: Sella P G, Mecca Yumna
Editor: Rahmad Nasution
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