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PM announces new initiatives with Indonesia

Contributor:
Fuseworks Media
Fuseworks Media

Prime Minister John Key today announced a suite of new agreements between Indonesia and New Zealand, which will complement and strengthen the bilateral relationship between the two countries.

Trade Minister Tim Groser and his Indonesian Ministerial counterparts today signed four agreements covering cooperation in agriculture, environment, labour and geothermal energy.

"These agreements will give Indonesians the opportunity to benefit from New Zealand's expertise in key areas, while also reinforcing people-to-people relationships between the two countries," says Mr Key.

"A programme of cooperation in geothermal energy will provide increased commercial opportunities for New Zealand businesses to assist Indonesia with its energy development programme.

"New Zealand has a strong track record of geothermal work with Indonesia, including educating more than 100 of the country's geothermal engineers. This agreement will build from that solid foundation, enhancing government-level collaboration and private-sector activity.

"I'm also pleased to announce the Government will be appointing an additional Trade Commissioner to the region, adding extra impetus to building business links between Indonesia and New Zealand.

"Business leaders have reinforced the case for increasing New Zealand's representation in Indonesia. Currently the responsibility for Indonesia is managed by New Zealand's Malaysia-based Trade Commissioner," says Mr Key.

New Zealand's world-leading expertise in agriculture will be put to use in training dairy technicians, farmers and breeding centre staff, as well as training Indonesia's agriculture ministry officials in areas like quarantine and agricultural trade negotiations.

Government-to-government cooperation in labour and environment will create opportunities to promote New Zealand technology and services relating to environmental protection and conservation. These two agreements also recognise that labour and environment regulations and practices should not be weakened to encourage trade or investment, nor used for trade protectionist purposes.

The agriculture, environment and labour agreements are designed to sit alongside the ASEAN-Australia-New Zealand Free Trade Agreement, which came into force for Indonesia in January 2012.

Mr Key is in Indonesia on a three-date state visit, accompanied by Trade Minister Tim Groser and a 26-strong business delegation from New Zealand.

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