Indonesian-Australian Free Trade Agreement from July 5, 2020

Following extensive negotiations over several years, Indonesia and Australia have ratified the Indonesia-Australia Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement (IA-CEPA) which will come into effect from July 5, 2020.

The IA-CEPA seeks to create a framework for Australia and Indonesia that will enable both to fully leverage the potential of the bilateral economic partnership, allowing the growth of economic cooperation between businesses, communities, and individuals.

Indonesia has been a growing market for Australian goods and services exporters, with 2018-19 total two-way trade in goods and services worth A$17.8 billion. This makes Indonesia Australia’s 13th largest trading partner, and the IA-CEPA is designed to provide Australian and Indonesian businesses the opportunity to expand and diversify this economic partnership further.

As one of the fastest growing economies in the Indo-Pacific, Indonesia presents a significant opportunity for Australian businesses. By some estimates, Indonesia will be the world’s fifth-largest economy by 2030, and with the IA-CEPA Australia is well-placed to deepen economic cooperation and share in Indonesia’s growth. The two strategic partners and largest economies in Southeast Asia now share an agreement that also complements and supports our shared interest in fostering a secure and prosperous region.

Business Council of Australia chief executive, Jennifer Westacott, said “This agreement locks in bilateral trade and investment so that as Indonesia’s economy grows, Australia prospers”.

While much of the attention has been focused on the greater opportunities for Australian farmers and other agricultural exports under the deal, universities may also be one of the big winners. Melbourne’s Monash University has recently announced plans to open a campus in Indonesia, which would be the first majority-owned foreign university in the country – something the IA-CEPA deal has made possible.

The IA-CEPA also offers the opportunity to further strengthen relationships between Indonesian IT providers and Australia clients. Mitrais has partnered with a wide range of Australian organisations for more than 2 decades, during which it has established itself as a premier provider of outsourced software development teams for Australian businesses. So much so, that Forrester Research has rated Mitrais as Indonesia’s leading provider of offshore software development services.

Founded by Australian David Magson in 2000, Mitrais grew out of Mincom Indoservices, a joint venture with Australian software giant Mincom in the early 1990s. David has been a committed advocate for Indonesian-Australian business engagement throughout, and sees the consolidation of the IA-CEPA agreement as vindication of its importance. And it seems the world agrees. Leading analysts, AT Kearney, rated Indonesia as one of the world’s top 4 locations for the delivery of services on its 2019 Global Services Location Index based on financial attractiveness, people skills and availability, business environment and digital resonance.

Part of the global CAC Holdings Group from 2019, Mitrais continues to focus on creating and maintaining long-term high-trust relationships with Australian business by augmenting their Australian software development teams with the additional capacity and capability that they require and continuing to add value to their organisations.

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