TAWAU: Indonesian Consulate of Tawau (KRI) head Sulistijo Djati Ismojo, received the Special Staff of the Chief Minister of Sabah, Border Trade Affairs, Datuk Nordin Ening, at the Indonesian Consulate Office of Tawau on Saturday also attended by Kadin Nunukan chairman Irsan Humokor and Kadin Nunukan advisor Haji Hendrik to discuss a number of border economic issues in order to increase trade and people-to-people relations between the two countries with the potential to be improved.
Djati Ismojo welcomed the exchange of plans on reviving the border trade in Sabah with Northern Kalimantan during the discussion.
He said in recent years, in recent years there has been a significant decline in trade value and volume across the border of both countries and therefore requires comprehensive planning, support of all parties and the availability of legal umbrella as a basis for border trade execution at the border. Both countries are reviewing the Cross Border Agreement and Border Trade Agreement which is expected to be completed this year and support the re-activation of the Kaltara-Sabah border trade.
Haji Hendrik and Irsan Humokor welcomed the plan to revive the border trade as this would improve the people’s economy in Nunukan.
Djati Ismojo said Nordin expects cooperation at the border with the principle of win-win situation. For the implementation of border trade, it is imperative that a council can be a coordinator for the Border Trade implementation so that all border trade operations can be properly monitored. The Council, referred to as the Cross Border Trade Council, is expected to have members of business people from both sides and facilitate coordination in the field.
Nordin, accompanied by Tawau and Lahad Datu businessmen, hopes that the implementation of cooperation will be signed by MOU Business to Business between Tawau, Sabah and Nunukan, Kaltara.
The consideration is expected to bridge the urgent need for the implementation of border trade at the Sabah border with North Kalimantan, pending the completion of the review of the Border Trade agreement of both countries.
In order to improve the implementation of cooperation on the farther boundary, Nordin stated that there was a plan by the Sabah state government to open Tawau route with Sungai Nyamuk, Tawau with Nunukan and Tawau with Tarakan. In planning, the opening of the landline connectivity is also mentioned, including the Serudong, Kalabakan with Sei Menggaris and Nabawan, Keningau with Kaltim.
On that occasion Dato Nordin expects Omar Bachora, Protem Chairman of Barter Trade Trade Association of Tawau and Special Representative from the Assistant Minister of Finance of Sabah as parties to be involved in the field, especially Tawau. In this case Kakadin Nunukan declares to be ready to cooperate as representative of Nunukan businessmen especially in the framework of the signing of the businessmen.
Asked further about barter trade ports, Nordin conveyed a plan to centralize trade activities including barter trade at one port currently being discussed at Kota Kinabalu’s head office.
The Border Trade implements plan is supported by Tawau Chinese business representative, Bugis Sabah Chamber of Commerce and Industry chairman, Chairman of BIMP-EAGA Tawau and Chairman of BIMP-EAGA Traders Association, traders of import and export traders and Tawau Transhipment.
In closing the disccusion the consulate welcomes the parties from Sabah and Kaltara to further coordination with the Economic Counselor Minister, Ibu Nindarsari Utomo and its Immigration Consulate in Tawau, Hubertus Hence Marbun.