Indonesian Companies Should Break Into Growing Mongolian Market, SBY Says
Ulan Bator, Mongolia. Indonesian construction firms are eager to break into Mongolia’s growing economy, President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono said during a visit to the state palace in Ulan Bator.
Mongolia’s robust economic growth, which reached 6.4 percent in 2010 and 17.3 percent in 2011, coupled with its lack of development makes it a prime market for Indonesia’s infrastructure companies, Yudhoyono said after meeting with Mongolian President Tsakhia Elbergdorj on Thursday.
“During the bilateral meeting, I told the president that Indonesia has the capability to develop [Mongolia’s} infrastructure,” Yudhoyono said in a joint press conference after the meeting on Thursday. “We’ve worked on infrastructure [projects] in Africa, Asia and the Middle East and we’re ready for infrastructure development partnerships in Mongolia.”
The two nations agreed to establish a joint commission of government officials and private companies to oversee potential projects, he said.
The head of Indonesia’s Investment Coordinating Board (BKPM), Chatib Basri, who joined Yudhoyono in his visit, said his office signed on Thursday a new agreement with Mongolian authorities expected to encourage investment partnerships between the two countries.
“Indonesian businesses must tap foreign markets, including Mongolia. I hope our participation this time will support the success of economic partnerships between the two sides,” Chatib said.
Yudhoyono and Elbergdorj also agreed in their meeting to boost bilateral trade, again citing untapped potential. Two-way trade between Indonesia and Mongolia totaled $6 million last year, less than Mongolia’s two-way trade with other Southeast Asian nations.
In the January-May period of the year, however, trade between Indonesia and Mongolia reached $2.2 million, 54 percent higher than the same period last year.
“I hope the figure will continue to increase,” Yudhoyono said.
The president explained that Mongolia was interested in palm oil and mineral water from Indonesia, while Indonesia was interested in importing meat and cattle.