Jakarta – Indonesia and Timor-Leste have agreed to increase cooperation, especially in the fields of border trade and investment.
"I expect a lot from this cooperation, taking into account the abundant available opportunities, especially in the border regions between Timor-Leste and Indonesia," Timor-Lestes Honorary Consul for Indonesia Irwansyah said during a meeting between the countries here on Wednesday, to discuss border cooperation.
As an example, he stated that nearly 80 percent of peoples daily needs in Timor-Leste, especially food commodities, came from Indonesia.
"There are many industries that can be developed later, such as cow breeding and fisheries. The government of Timor-Leste is ready to welcome not only big businesses but small and medium businesses, as well," Irwansyah affirmed.
He expressed hope that the cooperation would also improve the welfare of the people living in the border regions.
"There are numerous available opportunities that can be tapped into for development, especially trade-related ones, as Timor-Leste was established merely 13 years ago. So a lot can be done for its development," he remarked.
Citing an example, Irwansyah pointed out that Timor-Leste needed construction materials such as cement and steel. "There is great demand for steel. So far, they have imported the product mainly from China. This can be an opportunity for Indonesia," he added.
Irwansyah further noted that Timor-Leste also needed coffee, ketchup, instant noodles, cooking oil, and soap.
Moreover, he admitted that they hoped the establishment of the honorary consulate in Indonesia could be used to collect information, to improve relations not in the trade sector alone but in other fields, as well.
"I hope the presence of the honorary consul will help our businesses enter the country, and we will, in turn, help market their products," he remarked.