Minggu, 2 April 2023

Jokowi Urges Mutual Respect in EU-ASEAN Partnerships

Jayanty Nada Shofa
15 Des 2022 | 17:34 WIB
President Joko "Jokowi" Widodo addresses the EU-ASEAN Commemorative Summit in Brussels on Dec. 14, 2022. (Photo Courtesy of Presidential Press Bureau)
President Joko "Jokowi" Widodo addresses the EU-ASEAN Commemorative Summit in Brussels on Dec. 14, 2022. (Photo Courtesy of Presidential Press Bureau)

Jakarta. President Joko "Jokowi" Widodo told the recent European Union-ASEAN Summit that no one should dictate over others as the two trading blocs marked their 45th year of partnership.

“Our partnership has borne fruits, but I have to say our partnership is not all smooth-sailing. There are many differences that we must address,” Jokowi said before world leaders at the Brussels conference on Wednesday local time.

“If we want to build a better partnership, the partnership must be based on equality. There must be no imposition of views. There must not be one who dictates over others and thinks that 'my standard is better than yours',” Jokowi added.

According to Jokowi, Southeast Asia has remained an economic powerhouse for many decades.


“All projections indicate that Southeast Asia will continue to become an epicenter of growth,” the Indonesian leader said while adding that this would mean a partnership with ASEAN would be profitable to the EU. 

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Jokowi also brought the summit's attention to the recent EU-ASEAN Business Council Survey on European businesses’ perception of the Southeast Asian region. About 63 percent of the respondents view ASEAN as a region with the best economic opportunity over the next five years and 69 percent expect the ASEAN markets to become more important in terms of worldwide revenues over the next two years, according to the survey.

“And 97 percent of the respondents would like to see the EU accelerate its free trade agreement [FTA] negotiations with ASEAN and its members,” Jokowi said.

“To grow and prosper together is the only option. We must not only advance together, but we must progress equally. Let us shape a better future together.”

The government reported that the EU is ASEAN’s third largest trading partner after China and the US with bilateral trade reaching $268.9 billion last year. Foreign direct investment (FDI) inflows from the EU to ASEAN stood at $26 billion in 2021. This makes EU ASEAN’s second largest foreign investor after China.

Indonesia will assume the ASEAN chairmanship in 2023. 

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