Jakarta (ANTARA) - Indonesia is looking to capitalize on the potential of the Indo-Pacific region to build concrete economic cooperation, Deputy Foreign Minister Pahala Nugraha Mansury said on Tuesday.

Through the ASEAN-Indo-Pacific Forum (AIPF), Indonesia is showcasing 93 cooperation projects worth US$38.2 billion and 73 potential projects worth US$17.8 billion, which could encourage cooperation between ASEAN and Indo-Pacific countries.

The forum is taking place in Jakarta on September 5–6, 2023, serving as the flagship event of the 43rd ASEAN Summit.

Accounting for 64 percent to global economic growth, the Indo-Pacific is considered a strategic region where cooperation should be promoted instead of geopolitical rivalries and conflict, Mansury said.

“AIPF is expected to foster a culture of cooperation and collaborative development among ASEAN and Indo-Pacific countries,” he said during a press briefing after the opening of the forum.

The discussions and business-matching agenda during the two-day forum will focus on three main areas of cooperation: green infrastructure and resilient supply chains, innovative sustainable financing, as well as digital transformation and creative economy.

Mansury highlighted that those sectors are expected to become new sources of growth in ASEAN, which is projected to grow by 4.5 percent this year, according to the International Monetary Fund (IMF).

Under Indonesia's ASEAN chairmanship this year, AIPF serves as a platform for promoting constructive dialogues and fostering inclusive and tangible collaboration between state-owned enterprises (SOEs) and the private sector.

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“ASEAN is the future and epicenter of growth, playing a pivotal role in the Indo-Pacific region,” said Rosan Roeslani, Deputy Minister of State Enterprises.

Indonesia has invited cooperation in the development of an aluminum shelter worth US$1.8 billion, the development of Benoa Port in Bali worth US$4.3 billion, as well as the construction projects of a fertilizer factory, toll road, and special economic zone in Sanur, Bali.

During the AIPF, Indonesia will also promote cooperation in green infrastructure development and sustainable financing in the mega-project of building the new capital Nusantara in East Kalimantan.

AIPF is an implementation of the ASEAN Outlook on the Indo-Pacific (AOIP) initiated by Indonesia and adopted by ASEAN member countries in 2019.

The forum aims to strengthen inclusive regional architecture, encourage collaboration, strengthen mutually beneficial cooperation, and capture the opportunities in the Indo-Pacific region.

AIPF aligns with this year's ASEAN Summit theme of making ASEAN the epicenter of growth while preserving peace, security, stability, and prosperity in the Indo-Pacific.

The ASEAN region is deemed to have sufficient capital to become the epicenter of global economic growth, with a collective gross domestic product (GDP) of US$3.3 trillion in 2021.

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Reporter: Yashinta Difa Pramudyani
Editor: Anton Santoso
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