Discussion with the Indonesian Ministry of Trade

By Deasy Pane

On 4 October 2018, Mr Djatmiko Witjaksono, Head of the Centre for the Assessment of International Trade Cooperation from the Indonesian Ministry of Trade, visited ANU Indonesia Project to discuss trade related topics and current global economic challenges with ANU academics and PhD students. The discussion was attended by Dr Arianto Patunru, Professor Hal Hill, Professor Budy Resosudarmo, Dr Malcom Bosworth and several PhD students. Mr Djatmiko started the discussion by explaining Indonesia’s engagements in various comprehensive economic agreements as well as their challenges. In response, Professor Hal Hill emphasised the importance of unilateral liberalisation and the drawback of participating in many trade agreements, which may lead to the ‘spaghetti bowl’ effects as well as trade diversions. Dr Bosworth supported Professor Hill’s argument and suggested that instead of joining multiple trade agreements, it was important to pursue non-discriminatory trade arrangement under the World Trade Organisation (WTO). Donny Pasaribu then added that while he agreed with Professor Hill and Dr Bosworth’s arguments, trade negotiations were constrained by the domestic and international political considerations. Professor Budy Resosudarmo also stressed the importance of research in formulating policies and the role of research in the ministry.

ANU Indonesia Project received Mr. Djatmiko Witjaksono

Mr Iman Nurimansyah (Trade Attache Embassy of Indonesia at Canberra), Mr Djatmiko Witjaksono (Ministry of Trade, Indonesia) and Dr Arianto Patunru (ANU Indonesia Project)