Malang, East Java (ANTARA) - Indonesia’s 2023 ASEAN chairmanship can open opportunities for the market expansion of local products in the region, which has a population of 668.61 million, a researcher said.

"ASEAN countries are potential markets that must be optimized through strengthening trade cooperation," senior economic researcher at Brawijaya University, Joko Budi Santoso, said here on Thursday.

This year, Indonesia is holding the ASEAN chairmanship for the fifth time, with the theme “ASEAN Matters: Epicentrum of Growth.”

Through the theme, Indonesia wants to highlight ASEAN’s importance and relevance for the region and the world.

According to Santoso, the rapid development of Indonesia's creative economy sector requires a wider market.

One of the sectors whose products can be expanded to other ASEAN member countries' markets is electric vehicles, he said.

This potential can even be a momentum for Indonesia, which is one of the major players in the provision of battery raw materials and products in the world, he argued

Santoso said Indonesia can prioritize attracting ASEAN investors to invest in the country.

"This is also in accordance with the spirit of green economy and sustainable environmentally friendly development," he added.

In addition to being a market for electric vehicle batteries, the ASEAN region is also a potential market for agricultural and fisheries sectors, he noted.

"Because most of Indonesia's regions are agrarian," he said.

Trade cooperation in raw materials between industries in the country can be optimized, he added.

Cooperation in the form of fiscal incentives and minimal obstacles in trade between countries in the region can be established, he said.

Through its chairmanship this year, Indonesia wants to make ASEAN the global center of economic growth and a driving force for peace and regional welfare.

On a separate occasion, Statistics Indonesia (BPS) - West Java recorded that cars with a capacity of under 10 seats are the most exported goods from the province to ASEAN countries.

Head of BPS - West Java, Marsudijono, said the positive trend in car exports was because of the many automotive industries in Karawang and Bekasi, West Java.

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Translator: Vicki F, Kenzu
Editor: Rahmad Nasution
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