The European Union is planning to start free trade talks with Indonesia in line with the wishes of the bloc to boost economic ties to Asian countries. This was decided following EU commission president, Jean-Claude Juncker’s and European Union Trade Commission, Cecilia Malmstrom’s talks with the Indonesian President Joko Widodo, in Brussels recently. According to Juncker, they've agreed on the preparatory discussions for a comprehensive economic cooperation agreement and it is good news for Indonesia and the European Union.
Comprehensive Economic Partnership (CEPA) is already designed since 2011. This deal will free up trade in goods and services as well as create investment opportunities and procurement for the Indonesian market. In an effort to strengthen ties with ASEAN, the EU has agreed on free trade agreements with Singapore and Vietnam. In order to counterbalance the United States that began sweeping Asia, the EU is also aiming Indonesia.
The president said the free trade agreement is in line with the policy of the Indonesian economy is now more open and competitive. Indonesia export more agricultural products, fuels, minerals, textiles, and semi-finished goods to EU member states. Meanwhile, the EU's main exports to Indonesia are high-tech machinery, transport equipment, manufactured goods, chemicals, and processed foods.