Olivier Becht (The Jakarta Post)
Wed, September 21, 2022
I am happy to be here in Indonesia. The reason why I chose the Indo-Pacific region for my first major trip – I traveled to Australia before coming to Indonesia and I will travel further to Singapore – is that it is an important region in terms of economic, technological and environmental questions is.
It is one of the engines of the world economy and a true strategic center of gravity. The three countries of my trip, including Indonesia, are particularly important given the challenges we face together.
This trip is an opportunity to consider new long-term economic partnerships between France and Indonesia. For example, France wants to support the export activities of its French strategic sectors, particularly those linked to the ecological transition, in which it will invest heavily by 2030.
This visit also allows me to conduct important multilateral diplomacy in the context of the global post-pandemic recovery and the aftermath of the war in Ukraine. The G20 trade meeting in Bali will be the opportunity to reaffirm my commitment to free and fair trade as fundamental principles of the multilateral trading system, as well as modernizing international trade rules to be fair for all, more sustainable, resilient and responsive to the needs of our women citizens and enter citizens.
Indonesia is a major player and the largest economy within ASEAN. The economic and social progress Indonesia has made in recent years is good news for the 270 million Indonesians, as well as for France and French companies keen to forge solid, long-term partnerships with their country.
I would like to commend French companies that are actively contributing to Franco-Indonesian relations through their investments in Indonesia. French know-how is well represented in numerous sectors of the Indonesian economy.
This is evident in digital technology, where Thalès is enabling the construction of a data center, but also in smart cities in a broader sense – transport, construction, waste management, sanitation – a key issue in Indonesia as the country’s new capital is being built. France is also active in other sectors in Indonesia: banking, insurance, food and so on.
In recent years, France and Europe have decided to make a strong commitment to sustainable development. The European Parliament’s decision to stop “imported deforestation” must not hamper our trade relations but encourage us to work together to build new models and new value chains.
I am meeting with the Indonesian Minister of Communications and Information and Minister of National Development Planning in Jakarta to discuss all these issues. On behalf of the French government, I look forward to expanding our successful cooperation with Indonesia.
The author is French Minister for Foreign Trade, Attractiveness and French Citizens Abroad.