Trade ministers set November deadline for Indonesia-Australia trade deal

Trade ministers set November deadline for Indonesia-Australia trade deal

Trade ministers set November deadline for Indonesia-Australia trade deal

Updated 20 September 2017, 18:05 AEST

The Australian and Indonesian trade ministers announce a November deadline to complete a bilateral trade deal, of which limited details have been made public.

The Australian and Indonesian trade ministers have announced they have set a November deadline to complete a bilateral trade deal.

Trade Minister Steve Ciobo is in Jakarta for one of the final rounds of talks with his Indonesian counterpart, Enggartiaso Lukita.

Mr Ciobo said once the deal was done, Indonesia and Australia would both be in a stronger position in what he described as a "win-win" partnership.

A previous deal, announced during the Indonesian President's visit to Australia in February — for Australia to dump tariffs on pesticides and herbicides — took force from Wednesday in exchange for Indonesia reducing tariffs on imported raw sugar in about a fortnight.

The bilateral trade deal is known as the Indonesia-Australia Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement (IA-CEPA).

Mr Ciobo said he would not provide a sector-by-sector analysis of negotiations, and limited details have been made public.

"Clearly though, negotiation by virtue of the definition of the word means that there is compromise on both sides," Mr Ciobo said during a joint press conference in Jakarta.

The Trade Minister used the example of tariffs on Australian skim milk powder as an example of how a reduction in protectionism could assist both nations.

"The consequence would be that skim milk powder would potentially be cheaper here in Indonesia," the Minister said.

"And the reason that is important is because Indonesia uses skim milk powder to make sweetened condensed milk which Indonesia then exports."