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Foreign Minister in Indonesia

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Foreign Minister Kevin Rudd departed for Indonesia yesterday where he will be meeting with his counterpart Dr Marty Natalegawa and other senior figures to discuss shared political, security, commercial, environmental and cultural issues. Under the spotlight will be joint initiatives between Australia and Indonesia regarding combating terrorism and the response to natural disasters. "I look forward to discussing the East Asia Summit and ASEAN agendas for the year ahead, with a particular focus on practical ways to take forward EAS priorities, such as co-ordinated regional responses to natural disasters," said Rudd. Rudd will also meet with trade and agriculture ministers along with business leaders to discuss the Indonesia-Australia Comprehensive Economic Partnership agreement, as well as cattle exports to the country. Rudd said: "In 2010-11, Australia's total two way trade with Indonesia reached $13.8 billion, a 14 per cent increase over the previous year. However there is still significant commercial potential in our relationship with an economy which, according to PricewaterhouseCoopers, will be bigger than the Australian economy by 2023, and which if it continues its current development, will become the world's eighth largest economy by 2050." Rudd will follow his trip to Indonesia with a visit to New York to attend the final meeting of the United Nations Secretary-General's High-level Panel on Global Sustainability.

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