VP: Retaliate if Trump Starts the Trade War

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 Indonesia is ready to retaliate if the administration of the US President Donald Trump conducts a trade war against the country, Indonesian Vice President Jusuf Kalla stated on Thursday ( 8 March ).

"If he hinders the entry of our crude palm oil into the US, we will certainly also reduce our soybean and wheat flour imports from that country. It will be like that. We import soybean, corn, Boeing aircraft, and wheat. How many aircraft have we even bought from there?" he noted at the Institute of Police Science in Jakarta. 

He remarked that foreign countries will challenge the trade war policy implemented by President Trump.

President Trump had triggered a trade war with foreign countries by imposing a 25 percent tariff on steel imports and a 10 percent tariff on aluminum imports on grounds of protecting domestic products of the United States.

Meanwhile, Finance Minister Sri Mulyani has warned of the potential of a trade war if the US government really imposes tariffs on the imports of steel and aluminum.

"World history has demonstrated that the impact of a trade war on the global economy would be devastating," she pointed out.

Mulyani noted that the world is awaiting certainty on the plan that has the potential to trigger retaliation from countries sharing trade relations with the United States through tariffs. (antara)


The Indonesian government has committed to reducing plastic waste in its maritime areas, Expert Staff for Marine Ecology and Marine Resources of the Maritime Affairs and Fisheries minister, Aryo Hanggono stated. "The government will reduce plastic waste up to 70 percent by 2025," he remarked in Jakarta on Thursday ( 8 March ).

Currently, he noted that a draft of the presidential regulation on the management of plastic waste at sea was being formulated to ensure coordination between the central and local governments. He also reminded that banana peels took two weeks to decompose, while plastic bags took 10-20 years to decompose, and plastic bottles took hundreds of years to decompose. In addition, he remarked that several studies also indicated that if no significant changes are brought about, the ratio of plastic to fish in the oceans is expected to reach three is to one by 2025, and the oceans will contain more plastic than fish by 2050.

Meanwhile, Executive Director of Kehati Foundation M. S. Sembiring pointed out that Indonesia has the largest biodiversity in the world.

Earlier, Minister of Marine Affairs and Fisheries Susi Pudjiastuti stated that the volume of marine biomass in the nation`s maritime areas had risen significantly after the implementation of the government`s policy to ban the entry of foreign ships into Indonesian waters.

"The volume of biomass in the sea has risen up to 300 percent. The production of capture fisheries has increased, as foreign ships have been barred from entering Indonesian waters," she remarked here on Wednesday (Feb 28).

According to Pudjiastuti, following a moratorium on the issuance of licenses to former foreign fishing vessels, more than seven thousand ships have left the Indonesian state waters.  She expressed belief that the issuance of licenses to foreign vessels to buy fishing concessions in the territorial waters of Indonesia was a wrong decision. Pudjiastuti noted that the eradication of illegal fishing practices held significance, as a form of law enforcement and state sovereignty, since it benefits the country economically (antara)


Vice President Jusuf Kalla has called for increasing food productivity through technological developments to build food resilience. The vice president remarked that one of the problems currently faced by Indonesia was a decline in the area of agricultural land that has caused a food shortage.  "In short, it is how our food security can be maintained, how productivity can be increased through the use of technology and systems, as well as how the environment can be preserved. Unless the environment is preserved, everything will come to a standstill, as all plants need water," he noted while opening the Jakarta Food Security Summit in Jakarta, on Thursday ( 8 March ). 

Kalla pointed to the decrease in agricultural land due to the rising population in the country, which is estimated to reach 350 million by 2045, and will certainly increase the demand for food. The vice president also urged to conduct technological research in the field of agriculture in the region to increase food productivity in the midst of the depleting agricultural land.

"It means the demand for food will continue to increase at a rate of about three percent a year. Indonesia must be ready to meet the increasing demand through production with regard to a change in the consumption patterns and depletion of agricultural land owing to urbanization," he explained.


He underlined that bussinessmen must give the support the research to boost the productivity. 

"Research on rice has been conducted in Subang, rubber research in Sumatra, and sugar research in Pasuruan. Certainly, businessmen must support the research work with regard to boosting productivity, with the hope that the use of technology will help to tackle the challenges posed by the rising population or climate change that may affect food productivity," Kalla said. (antara )


President Joko Widodo visited the construction of Mass Rapid Transit -MRT project in the Hotel Indonesia Roundabout and Senayan area, Jakarta on Wednesday. He said that the visit was aimed to ensure that the project is running on schedule. He also stated that his visit was also to ensure Jakarta’s readiness ahead of Asian Games to be held in August. The President stated that the MRT construction project has been running according to the schedule and will start operating in March 2019. Ahead of the Asian Games, the President hopes that the traffic in Jakarta, especially in Senayan area, will not be disturbed by the construction of MRT.

“I came to see the development of our big project namely MRT. I want a certainty that according to the schedule and according to the time that has been set since the beginning. I asked the Director that this project will be completed on time. That can be commercially operated next year in March. Then, the second one relates to the Asian Games in August 2018. The Jakarta governor also conveyed that the wide pavement in Semanggi to Senayan area will be finished as well. It's already started. So really when we welcome the Asian Games guests as many as 30 thousands of athletes and guests later. Jakarta is really ready, clean, beautiful, and we expect everything on time,” President Joko Widodo said.

According to data from PT MRT Jakarta, the total project of MRT development has finished more than 91 percent. It is including the elevated and the underground construction that connect from Lebak Bulus to Hotel Indonesia Roundabout. The first phase of MRT construction reaches 16 kilometers connected by double track railway. During the visit, President Joko Widodo was accompanied by Minister of Transportation, Budi Karya Sumadi, Governor of Jakarta, Anies Baswedan, President Director of PT MRT Jakarta, William Sabandar, and Chairman of the Nasdem Party, Surya Paloh. (VOI/Ndy)