Press Release Visit of Minister of Tourism and Creative Economy of Indonesia to Stockholm, Sweden



?Minister of Tourism and Creative Economy of Indonesia, Dr. Mari Elka Pangestu, visited Stockholm, Sweden on 11th March 2013 and met Minister for Trade of Sweden, H.E. EwaBjörling.

They discussed bilateral developments between Indonesia and Sweden, Indonesia and European Union as well as the current and future state of multilateral trading system of the World Trade Organization (WTO), whose term of office of its Director General would expire on 31 August 2013.

Both ministers agreed that the WTO as an institution has contributed significantly in keeping protectionism at bay, especially during the last global financial crisis. It is also important to strengthen the WTO with its rules-based framework in order to ensure that global trade continues to flow and contribute to growth. 

During her visit to Stockholm, Minister Pangestu also met representatives of think-tanks, government and business sectors, including Centre for Business and Policy Studies (SNS), Stockholm Institute of Transition Economics, National Board of Trade, and Swedish Chamber of Commerce, to exchange views and get inputs as to the importance of trade for growth and job creation, the importance of the global trading system as it faces various challenges, including bilateral agreements such as between the EU and US, and how to maintain confidence and momentum to conclude the multilateral trade negotiation.

Minister Pangestu, who was Minister of Trade of Indonesia from October 2004 to October 2011, is convinced that a multilateral trading system is a solution to many problems worldwide.  She said, “Since its creation, the WTO has helped generate more trade, more growth, more jobs and more opportunities in the world. Above all, it has lifted people and nations out of poverty both in developed and developing countries”.

Minister Pangestu is one among four ministers who are candidates for the Director General of the WTO. Other than the four ministers, there are five other candidates who are in the race. If elected as the new Director General, Dr. Pangestu would be the first woman to hold the position since the creation of the WTO.

Based on her experience, she understands the importance of inclusion and would ensure that the opportunities from global free trade benefit everyone, men and women, in developed and developing countries, for big business and SMEs.

In the last few weeks, the Minister already presented her vision and mission to the WTO General Council Meeting in Geneva, as well as meeting WTO members’ representatives. She has also visited Washington DC, Beijing, Brussels, Paris, Berlin, Warsaw, Budapest, Moscow, Dubai/UAE, Abidjan, Abuja, and Cairo in order to share her commitment to integrate every country into the global trading system.


Source: Indonesian Embassy in Stockholm