News IORA members meet in Bali
The Indian Ocean Rim Association’s (IORA) senior officials meeting opened in Nusa Dua, Bali, on Tuesday.
The Foreign Ministry’s Asia Pacific and Africa director general Desra Percaya said this year’s conference was in preparation for next year’s high-level meeting scheduled to be held in Jakarta.
“One of the most important outcomes of last year’s IORA conference in Padang, West Sumatra, was to hold the first ever high-level meeting,” Desra said during the opening speech.
On Monday, the IORA held its working group on trade and investment, as a follow up from last month’s symposium in Yogyakarta, which was held in conjunction with IORA’s 20th anniversary.
Benyamin Carnadi, the director of the Asia Pacific and Africa cooperation, who led the workshop, said IORA had agreed to speed up “the launch of the IORA Web Trade Repository and IORA Guide for Investment”.
Organizers of Indonesia’s Foreign Ministry said the Web Trade Repository aims to collect trade data, including policies and opportunities. The investment guide aims “to provide comprehensive information on rules and policies regarding investment in each member country of IORA,” a press release of the Ministry said.
On Tuesday, Desra said Wednesday’s meeting would involve high-ranking officials from IORA’s seven “dialogue partners” – China, Egypt, France, Germany, Japan, the UK and the US – aiming to increase engagement among the members and partners.
During the senior officials meeting, IORA plans to complete the IORA Concord, in which Indonesia hopes that illegal, unreported and unregulated fishing will be included.
Established in Mauritius in 1997, IORA members include the nations of Australia, Bangladesh, Comoros, India, Indonesia, Iran, Kenya, Madagascar, Malaysia, Mauritius, Mozambique, Oman, Seychelles, Singapore, Somalia, South Africa, Sri Lanka, Tanzania, Thailand, the United Arab Emirates and Yemen.
IORA has been established as a UN observer.
Following the senior officials meeting, a council of ministers meeting will be held on Thursday. So far, ministers and one deputy minister from 11 countries — Australia, Bangladesh, Comoros, India, Indonesia, Mauritius, Seychelles, Singapore, Somalia, Sri Lanka and the United Arab Emirates — have already confirmed their attendance. (ati)