Shanghai, China (ANTARA) - Vice President Ma'ruf Amin, on Tuesday, met with Mayor of Shanghai, Gong Zheng, to discuss potential cooperation in the trade, investment, tourism, and halal industry sectors.

"Today, I met with the Mayor of Shanghai. We consider Shanghai as the 'gateway' of bilateral trade relations between Indonesia and China. It is also a center of trade, financial industry, automotive industry, and others," he remarked at a press conference in Shanghai, China.

The vice president and the mayor spent half an hour during the meeting held at the Xijiao Conference Center in Xijiao State Hotel.

"Due to Shanghai's crucial role, I pushed the city to make even greater investments (in Indonesia)," he remarked, adding that several business actors from Shanghai had made investments of significant value, including in Morowali District, Central Sulawesi Province.

The VP also made the most of the meeting to urge Mayor Gong to encourage more of his citizens to visit tourist destinations in Indonesia.

"They are also interested in the tourism sector. He (Mayor Gong) said that Indonesia has an appealing tourism sector," he pointed out.

Meanwhile, the Shanghai Mayor affirmed that both Indonesia and Shanghai have broad market reach that can be optimized to bolster trade ties between the two parties.

"Regarding cooperation in the halal industry, I have just found out that Indonesia has a potential halal market value of US$135 billion. I will extend this information to the Shanghai Municipal Commission of Commerce," he remarked.

Furthermore, Mayor Gong, who formerly served as governor of Shandong, revealed that his government is currently making efforts to transform Shanghai into a global modern and influential city, in line with the instruction of President of China Xi Jinping.

"In recent years, Shanghai has been witnessing its competitive increases. Last year, the city's gross domestic product had reached CN¥4.47 trillion, or US$600 billion, thus affirming its position as China's biggest economic center and fifth in the world," he noted.

He further remarked that Shanghai is currently developing an international center for monetary and trade while noting that the volume of containers coming in and out at the Port of Shanghai has been the largest in the world for 13 years.

Moreover, Shanghai recorded a total trade volume of CN¥10.4 trillion (approximately US$1.425 trillion) last year, Gong stated.

The mayor also affirmed that Indonesia and China are two friendly countries that share similar dreams. Indonesian President Joko Widodo (Jokowi) and Chinese President Xi Jinping have been leading their countries to further improve bilateral relations, he remarked.

"China has been Indonesia's largest partner in trade for the past 10 years. During a meeting with President Jokowi in Chengdu, President Xi Jinping emphasized China's readiness to bolster strategic cooperation with Indonesia," Gong stated.

During the meeting with Gong, VP Amin was accompanied by Ambassador to China and Mongolia Djauhari Oratmangun, Acting Consul General in Shanghai Faramela, Head of the Vice Presidential Secretariat Ahmad Erani Yustika, and several officials from the secretariat.

Meanwhile, Ma Chunlei, Deputy Secretary General of the Shanghai Municipal Party Committee and Secretary General of the Shanghai Municipal Government, among others, also attended the meeting to accompany Mayor Gong.

The meeting with the Shanghai mayor concluded the vice president's six-day working visit to China, where he met with several high-ranking Chinese officials, including Prime Minister Li Qiang, to discuss bilateral cooperation in various sectors, including high-speed trains and electric vehicles.

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Translator: Desca L, Tegar Nurfitra
Editor: Sri Haryati
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