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Foreign Affairs Trade, Political

CDU EXPERT: Trade and investment the big points of discussion for Indonesia and Australia during Prime Minister’s trip, expert says.

Charles Darwin University 2 mins read

7 September 2023

Australian Prime Minister Anthony Albanese is attending the ASEAN and East Asia summits in Indonesia. Charles Darwin University (CDU) Lecturer in Indonesian Studies Dr Nathan Franklin says Australia and Indonesia will use the opportunity to discuss better trade between the two countries including two-way trade and investment.

Dr Nathan Franklin, Lecturer in Indonesian Studies, Charles Darwin University

Contact details: +61 8 8946 6529 or email us at to arrange an interview.

“The relationship with Indonesia is at a relative high point with the Albanese Government is still relatively well respected in Indonesia.”

“Australia will watch closely the election results from the forthcoming Indonesian Presidential election on 14 February 2024.”

“There are three candidates (Prabowo, Ganjar, and Baswedan) and it is likely that there will be no clear winner in the first round.”

“Anyone who wins will be certainly favourable to Australia, however, Prabowo might be a little controversial because of his human rights record.”

“The discussion priorities between Indonesia and Australia will be better trade between the two countries, two-way trade and investment.”

“Indonesia wants to develop lithium processing and manufacturing battery technology using lithium from Australia, including from the NT. There are opportunities in this space, but likely using international foreign companies.”

 “It is difficult to see how Indonesia can develop this new complex technology independently, using Indonesian companies, so while the manufacturing might occur in Indonesia, it will likely be dominated by foreign companies, from Japan, South Korea, China, USA, etc.”

“Australian governments at all levels must invest in Indonesian studies programs, particularly language.”

“With adequate funding, good Indonesian studies programs can be developed around the country, building up the industry, which then builds capacity and employment stability.”

“Without major structural support in the form of tens millions of dollars over many years, outlasting changes in governments, Indonesian studies and Indonesian language will languish at the margins.”

Contact details:

Emily Bostock
Acting Research Communications Officer

T: +61 8 8946 6529
M: 0432 417 518

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