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ERIA Co-Hosts G20 High-Level Forum on Trade, Investment, and Industry

26 July 2022
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Jakarta, 26-27 July 2022: The Economic Research Institute for ASEAN and East Asia (ERIA) co-hosted a G20 High-Level Forum (HLF) on trade, investment, and industry with the International Economic Association (IEA), Ministry of Industry of the Republic of Indonesia, Ministry of Trade of the Republic of Indonesia, and Ministry of Investment of the Republic of Indonesia (BKPM) on July 26 and 27, 2022. The two-day event included global experts in trade, investment, and industry fields including world-famous academics and practitioners like Professor Dani Rodrik, Professor Jayati Ghosh, and Dr Ngozi Okonjo-Iwaela.

The event opened with keynote speech the Coordinating Minister for Economic Affairs of the Republic of Indonesia, Dr Ir Airlangga Hartarto. Minister Hartarto stated that the role of trade is crucial today as well as the supporting role of investment and industry. Trade, investment, and industry are the engines of growth and could embark on a stronger and faster economic recovery from the pandemic. The current challenges come from the Ukraine war, high inflation, and rising energy prices have urged the G20 to be a strategic platform to respond to such challenges and make the right policies for the world.

ERIA’s President, Professor Hidetoshi Nishimura, followed with opening remarks emphasising the importance of global coordination in these times of turbulence because of the COVID-19 pandemic’s scarring effects and geopolitical tensions which have tremendously affected global trade, investment, and the overall economic performance. The remarks from ERIA’s President were followed by remarks from Dr Ngozi Okonjo-Iwaela, WTO’s Director General who presented the outcomes of the WTO’s 12th Ministerial Conference.

The first day also saw speeches by three ministers of the Republic of Indonesia: Dr Zulkifli Hasan, Minister of Trade of the Republic of Indonesia; Dr Agus Gumiwang Kartasasmita, Minister of Industry of the Republic of Indonesia; and Dr Riyatno, Deputy of Investment Cooperation of the Ministry of Investment of the Republic of Indonesia.

During his remarks, Minister Hasan stated ‘Global challenges require global solutions. The G20 must prove its relevance in bringing tangible benefits and results, not only to its members, but also to all countries.’ He added that trade, investment, and industry need to synergize together as the main drivers to achieve strong and sustainable economic growth.

According to Minister Kartasasmita, comprehensive development of industry 4.0 could support technological progress and lay the groundwork for inclusive and sustainable industrialization. Cooperation between stakeholders by creating networks and strengthening communications and collaboration efforts is necessary.

Deputy Riyatno discussed the importance of the flow of green investment: ‘In the future, we need to agree on the rules regarding a more equitable carbon market between developed and developing countries. We also need to encourage sustainable investment to contribute to people’s welfare.’

The last event of the first day was a panel discussion with experts on trade and investment, including the Vice Minister of Trade of the Republic of Indonesia, Dr Jerry Sambuaga; the Minister of Commerce and Industry of India, Mr Piyush Goyal; the Minister of International Trade, Export Promotion, Small Business and Economic Development of Canada, Ms Mary Ng; Director of Investment and Enterprise of UNCTAD, Mr James Zhan; and Director of Programme and Partnership Department of UNIDO, Dr Jaime Moll de Alba. This session discussed three sub-themes: (1) Achieving Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) via Stronger, Inclusive and Transparent WTO and Multilateral Trading System (MTS); (2) The Role of Sustainable and Innovative Investment on Addressing Global Economic and Environment Challenges; and (3) Ensuring Sustainable and Resilient Industry through Industry 4.0 to Support Economic Recovery.

On the second day of the event, there were three panel sessions that focused on economic recovery, digital transformation, and energy transition. The first-panel session was chaired by the former Minister of Finance of the Republic of Indonesia, Dr Chatib Basri, and focused on global economic recovery issues. The panelists of this session included Dr Vera Songwe of the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa, Professor Maurice Obstfeld of the University of California Berkeley, and Professor Jayati Ghosh of the University of Massachusetts Amherst. This panel session was followed by another panel session chaired by the President of the International Economic Association Professor Dani Rodrik. This second-panel session focused on the importance, opportunities, and threats of digital transformation. ERIA’s Dr Lili Yan Ing was a panelist in this session, accompanied by Dr Zia Qureshi of Brookings Institute and Dr Albert Park of Asian Development Bank. The last panel session was chaired by ERIA’s Dr Fauziah Zen and discussed the new financing models for the energy transition. Professor Justin Yifu Lin of Peking University, Dr Ishac Diwan of the Paris School of Economics, and Mr Robert Seung of Korindo Group were the panelists in this last panel session.

The HLF ended with closing remarks by the Chair of the G20 TII Working Group, Mr Djatmiko Bris Witjaksono. In his remarks, Mr Djatmiko echoed ERIA’s President's messages on the importance of international coordination in times of recovery from the COVID-19 Pandemic and the looming global economic downturn. The event also saw the formal launching of joint ERIA and IEA’s G20 report titled ‘New Normal, New Technologies, New Financing’, which was edited by Dr Ing of ERIA and Professor Rodrik of IEA, and contained writings from some speakers of this event.

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