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China, Indonesia Ink Deals Worth $28 Billion Including Manufacturing

Oct. 3, 2013
Trade between China and Indonesia has soared from $16.5 billion in 2005 to more than $66.2 billion in 2012, while Chinese direct investment has also increased.

JAKARTA -- As Chinese President Xi Jinping paid a state visit to Southeast Asia's biggest economy, Indonesia and China inked trade and investment deals worth $28.2 billion Thursday.

Representatives from the two countries' business communities signed deals in the mining, manufacturing, energy and transport sectors.

Among the deals was a $1.5 billion investment from state-run China Communications Construction Co. (CCCC) to build an 18-mile monorail network through the capital Jakarta.

Investors have long bemoaned Jakarta's relentless traffic, which sucks billions of dollars from Indonesia's economy annually.

CCCC general manager He Junfeng said that Indonesia was attractive as a large market with strong economic growth, but infrastructure was in need of improvement.

"I think here there is opportunity, so it's the right time to invest," he said.

President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono told Chinese businessmen that Indonesia's "doors are open for anyone who wants to invest".

"The government of Indonesia is continuing to improve the quality of service for investors and trade partners, including China," he said.

The China Development Bank will invest in projects with Indonesia's OKI Pulp and Paper Mills, while Chinese companies and financial institutions will invest in coal mining, as well as electricity generation and aluminum smelters.

State-owned Industrial and Commercial Bank of China also signed a deal to lease five Boeing 777 and six Airbus 320 planes to Indonesia's flag carrier Garuda.

Indonesian officials have said they hoped the cooperation with China would boost their economy, which is experiencing a slowdown after years of steady growth.

The Indonesian and Chinese central banks agreed Tuesday to a 100 billion yuan (US$16.3 billion) currency swap deal to shore up the ailing rupiah if necessary.

Trade between China and Indonesia has soared from $16.5 billion in 2005 to more than $66.2 billion in 2012, while Chinese direct investment has also increased.

Xi started the two-day state visit to Indonesia on Wednesday.

Earlier Thursday he made the first ever speech by a foreign leader to the Indonesian parliament, in which he urged peaceful resolution of territorial disputes after rows with Southeast Asian countries over the South China Sea.

Copyright Agence France-Presse, 2013

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