Jakarta (ANTARA) - Cooperatives and Small and Medium Enterprises Minister Teten Masduki invited South Korea to cooperate on empowering micro, small, and medium enterprises (MSMEs) by facilitating them to enter the digital market.

"We want to strengthen economic cooperation by promoting digital transformation, connecting Indonesian and Korean startup companies," he remarked as cited from a written statement received here on Thursday.

Minister Masduki made the statement while attending the 2023 ASEAN-Korea AI Youth FESTA event in Jakarta on Wednesday (September 6).

The event constitutes a side event for the 43rd Summit of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) that is being organized on September 5-7 by Indonesia as the chair of the regional bloc this year.

According to Masduki, the ASEAN seeks to intensify its cooperation with South Korea by proposing various joint programs that aim to exchange technology, build capacity, hone digital talent and literacy, as well as improve infrastructures to support the development of MSMEs and startup companies.

In the fourth industrial revolution era, business actors will be able to seize great opportunities and develop their business if they are capable of properly adapting to the developments in technology, he remarked.

To seize the opportunities, he affirmed that all relevant stakeholders in ASEAN should strengthen their collaboration and synergy in the hopes of placing the Southeast Asian region as center of global economic growth.

"Collaboration among all stakeholders is of the essence in responding to disruptions by introducing a digital framework and developing concept designs for digital solutions," he remarked.

He also noted that the Indonesian government has managed to get 22.8 million MSMEs to enter the digital ecosystem, adding that the government will continue to make even greater efforts to reach the target of digitizing 30 million MSMEs by 2024.

"The internet offers great opportunities for MSMEs to reach the global markets efficiently, create innovations, and develop their businesses as well as competitiveness," he stated.

In order to facilitate MSMEs to enter the digital ecosystem, relevant stakeholders should streamline and align related policies, improve data protection and cybersecurity, and address the digital divide among MSME actors, he remarked.

"We hope that the collaboration among ASEAN countries will be able to promote digital transformation to accelerate economic recovery and transformation," he stated.

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Translator: Kuntum K, Tegar Nurfitra
Editor: Sri Haryati
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