The Minister for Agriculture Suswono stated that Indonesia’s agriculture trade sector is 2 billion US dollars ahead compared to China’s. “We need not worry about the ASEAN-China Free Trade Agreement (ACFTA), because if compared (to China) we have a surplus,” stated the minister after closing the Agrinex 2010, Jakarta, Sunday.
He stated that in certain sectors Indonesia is ahead, in agriculture this is thanks to crude palm oil, cacao, and rubber. China is still importing those commodities from Indonesia.
For that reason, Indonesia’s agriculture trade still has a 2 billion US dollar surplus compared to China. “There are some Chinese products in Indonesia, but we are still on a surplus.”
According to the minister, discussions on free trade between the two countries have been through a long proces, and that the Indonesian government isn’t forcing the ACFTA simply to fulfill an old agenda. “Because of the crisis we are quite burdened. But we’re fine with China.”
For horticulture, though Indonesia’s trade is relatively low compared to China, but at least Indonesia is exporting snake fruit to China. “Trade between countries is something quite ordinary, we have strengths and they have some too, we need each other.”
The minister still urges Indonesia to monitor Chinese horticulture and agriculture products coming into our country. “We have two tools or instruments, which are the SPS and Kotex. Both of which are international agreements for the standard of food.” He believes that monitoring is necessary to prevent any concern for viral transmission, diseases, or bioterrorism.
Source : Kompas.com
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