Indian chemical firms to set up joint ventures in Indonesia

Jakarta, Jan 22 (IANS) Indian chemical companies are looking at forming joint ventures with Indonesian firms as they look to expand business in Southeast Asia.

A 50-member delegation from industry association CHEMEXCIL, led by Chairman Satish Wagh, explored investment opportunities with the Indonesian chemical industry at a Buyer Seller Meet (BSM) here Monday.

The BSM was organised by the Indian embassy in association with the Federation of Indonesia Chemical Industry (FIKI) and KADIN Jakarta to create a positive brand image of Indian business and bridging the information gap. More than 100 Indonesian companies attended the event during which many deals were finalised.

CHEMEXCIL promotes export of a variety of products such as dyes and dyes intermediates, organic and inorganic chemicals, agro chemicals, soaps and toiletries. It is a single-point source of contact to help overseas buyers in sourcing from India.

Inaugurating the event, Ambassador Gurjit Singh said as India has a diversified mix of industry in the chemical sector, Indonesian companies could take advantage in associating with them.

He called for more such B2B (business-to-business) engagements and urged both sides to look for new business opportunities and technological transfer.

Indonesia is India's second largest trading partner in ASEAN, with chemical industry being the fastest growing.

The ambassador said although the overall bilateral trade as well in the chemical sector had gone up over the years, trade data indicates that India's share of chemical exports to Indonesia is still not commensurate with the industry strength and there is still vast potential waiting to be tapped.

India's chemical products export has more than doubled in the last two years. It has increased from $377 million in 2009-10 to $873 million in 2011-12.

Speaking on the occasion, FIKI Managing Director Ida Bagus Agra Kusuma and KADIN Jakarta Deputy Chairman Irwan Hutasoit looked forward to having India as one of the major trade and investment partners of Indonesia.

Both sought an early initiation of a Comprehensive Economic Cooperation Agreement (CECA) to facilitate further enhancement of two-way trade and investment.

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