What opening of embassy in Indonesia means to Tanzania

IN promoting and strengthening its diplomatic relations with Indonesia, Tanzania has officially opened its Embassy in Jakarta.

Speaking at the opening ceremony of the Embassy on Wednesday, Minister for Foreign Affairs and East African Cooperation, Dr Stergomena Tax, said that the establishment of the embassy would serve as a platform for deepening cooperation, particularly in the economic sector, between the two nations.

“Close collaboration between Tanzania and Indonesia has been the norm, and we believe that the official opening of our embassy here will foster more cooperation between our two nations, especially in the economic sector,” said Dr Tax.

Moreover, Minister Tax highlighted the potential opportunities that a strong alliance with Indonesia, a country with significant economic strides, could provide Tanzania.

She focused on Tanzania’s ability to add value to its agricultural and mineral products, thus enhancing its competitiveness in international markets and promoting economic growth.

Moreover, Dr Tax thanked the government of Indonesia for the great cooperation it has been providing to the Embassy of Tanzania, Jakarta since the embassy was established in the country in 2022 until it was officially launched yesterday.

On the Indonesian side, Foreign Minister, Retno Marsudi underlined the strong and enduring bond between the two countries, dating back to the founding of both nations at the Bandung Conference in 1955.

Marsudi emphasised the significance of the embassy’s inauguration in terms of strengthening diplomatic relations. She promised further collaboration to nurture and enhance this relationship, specifying several areas of mutual interest.

“We will increase our efforts to follow up on potential collaborations that have been identified in various sectors. Specifically, we aim to enhance cooperation in trade and investment, health, and development. We are also committed to working together to address global challenges such as climate change and the Covid-19 pandemic,” stated Marsudi.

She also noted the positive trend in the trade relations between Indonesia and Tanzania, increasing by 50 per cent from 2019 to 2022, reaching over 340 million US dollars.

“Building on this momentum, Indonesia intends to export some other goods such as rubber tires, fertilisers, foods and beverages. We also agreed to explore the possibility of establishing a bilateral Preferential Trade Agreement,” she added.

Tanzania and Indonesia first established diplomatic relations in 1964, the same year that the Indonesian embassy was officially opened in Tanzania. Prior to the opening of the Tanzanian embassy in Indonesia, Tanzanian interests were represented through its embassy in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.

According to the United Nations COMTRADE database, in 2022 Tanzania exported 28.22 million US dollars’ worth of goods to Indonesia. The main exports were cloves (39.7 million US dollars), cocoa beans (7.89 US dollar million), and raw tobacco (7.89 million US dollars).

In the same year, Indonesia exported 74.73 million US dollars’ worth of goods to Tanzania. The main imports were palm oil (240 million US dollars), stearic acid (9.16 million US dollars), and other synthetic fabrics (8.03 million US dollars).

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