Mi Goreng Just The Beginning, As Indonesia Trade Deal Signed
A landmark deal, nine years in the making, has finally been signed in Jakarta -- and is hoped to massively boost Australia's trade to one of our closest neighbours.
Indonesia has agreed to scrap or lower taxes on 99 percent of Aussie imports, under the Indonesia-Australia Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement.
Australian trade minister Simon Birmingham said the benefits will be not only financial, but also include closer political ties and business links.
He used the global popularity of Mi Goreng noodles as an example.
“Australian wheat is milled into flour here in Indonesia, creating jobs in your flour mills," Birmingham said.
“That flour is then used to produce the world-famous Indomie noodles, providing work for your food processors.”
“Those Indomie noodles are packaged and enjoyed by millions of people in Indonesia and around the world, including back in Australia.”
READ MORE: Australia Pledges Indonesia More Aid
The deal is set to make Australian products -- including wheat, cattle, premium food and wine -- cheaper and more popular in Indonesia.
Aussie farmers will be in a prime position to cash in on the rapidly-growing middle class in Indonesia. Indonesia's economy is booming, and the country is set to become one of the most powerful and influential nations in the world.
“This is an historic occasion," Birmingham said.
The minister claimed the deal would bring the two nations "closer together than ever before."
The deal won't come into place until both our parliament and Indonesia's sign off on it.
Negotiations for the deal began almost a decade ago, and at times -- even recently -- it looked like it would not happen.
Last year, in a bid to keep Malcolm Turnbull's seat in the contested by-election, new Prime Minister Scott Morrison suggested moving Australia's embassy in Israel.
READ MORE: Embassy 'Move' Not About Wentworth: Sharma
While that may have pleased the local Jewish community in Wentworth, it outraged those of Islamic faith in Indonesia, which has the world's largest Muslim population.
The diplomatic issues have been smoothed over however, and the trade deal struck.