Jakarta (ANTARA) - Industry Minister Agus Gumiwang Kartasasmita met Minister-Delegate, Foreign Trade, Economic Attractiveness, and French Nationals Abroad, Olivier Becht, to discuss progress of Indonesia-European Union Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement (I-EU CEPA) negotiations, deforestation, carbon, and investment opportunities.

The meeting took place on the sidelines of Kartasasmita's working visits to France and Japan on October 2-6, 2023.

"We conveyed the importance of collaboration in the I-EU CEPA to accelerate the completion of ongoing negotiations, so that both parties can immediately benefit from the agreement," he noted in a statement on Thursday.

He remarked that since 2016, negotiations on the I-EU CEPA agreement had been ongoing for 15 rounds. Hence, he is keen to seek the French government's opinions on important points of the agreement, including the resolution of pending issues.

Regarding deforestation, Kartasasmita stated that as a partner, Indonesia seeks recognition in the sustainable practices existing in agricultural supply chains in commodity-producing countries. This is also related to Indonesian export commodities sent to the European Union.

In the last two years, the rate of deforestation in Indonesia has reached its lowest point in history due to various policies implemented by the government, he highlighted.

This figure last year decreased by 75 percent to the lowest level since monitoring began in 1990, he stated.

Hence, Indonesia is keen to continue to work with France to ensure that these efforts remain effective and produce useful results, the minister affirmed.

Kartasasmita also conveyed the first carbon credit trading scheme in Indonesia that was launched by President Joko Widodo last week. This program is included in Indonesia's efforts towards net zero emissions by 2060.

This scheme is designed to be a new, sustainable economic opportunity in line with the world's movement towards an environmentally friendly economy.

"I hope that France can be part of our change towards a more sustainable future," he stated.

Kartasasmita then encouraged France to participate in deepening the industrial structure through investment to fill the industrial structure.

"If France can invest in our industrial structure, the value chain from upstream to downstream industrial processes can strengthen the supply chain and industrial ecosystem in Indonesia," he noted.

He stated that a fulfilled industrial structure from upstream to downstream is an important key to helping Indonesia become a high-economy country in 2045.

This policy also has high added value and is key for Indonesia to become part of the global supply chain, Kartasasmita stated.

Furthermore, the minister highlighted plans for other meetings with French businessmen to establish joint venture cooperation and capacity building that will bring benefits for both parties.

"We will also meet with French automotive companies to work together in developing the electric vehicle (EV) industry," he remarked.

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Translator: Ade Irma J, Resinta S
Editor: Azis Kurmala
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