Thursday, March 23, 2023

Digital cooperation between GCC countries and Indonesia

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Hanif Muhammad





Indonesia and the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) countries have maintained their fruitful relations. The 6 GCC countries – comprising of Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates (UAE) – are looking to expand more on their digital cooperation with Indonesia.

Collaboration with UAE

Signed in early 2022 as part of the Comprehensive Economic Partnership between Indonesia and the UAE (IUAE-CEPA), the two countries strengthened their ties in the digital economy and encourage the development of small- and medium-enterpises (SMEs).

In November 2021, Bank Indonesia and the Central Bank of the UAE (CBUAE) signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to cooperate closely in three key areas:

  • Digital transformation of payments and financial services to enable more efficient and secure transactions.
  • Cross-border payment systems, including retail payments.
  • Anti-Money Laundering (AML) and Countering the Financing of Terrorism (CFT) Frameworks.

Partnership with Oman

Oman’s International Emerging Technology Company (ETCO) and Awadah Group Indonesia agreed to develop an augmented reality and artificial intelligence voice platform in December 2020. The partnership aimed at launching a unique application called Salam Tech, the first in Indonesia and in ASEAN.

Cooperation with Saudi Arabia

In 2021, Saudi Arabia invited Indonesia to become a founding member of the Digital Cooperation Organization (DCO), which is meant to be a multilateral platform for digital cooperation.

In September 2022, Saudi Minister of Communications and Information Technology Abdullah Al-Swaha met with Indonesian officials to discuss the growth of the digital economy, new technologies, digital government, the development of technical talent, fostering innovation and the advancement of space technology.

A 2019 MoU between Jakarta and Riyadh was aimed to facilitate Saudi investments in Indonesia’s digital economy sector. The cooperation included exchange of information, experience and knowledge among professionals, measures to enable penetration of Indonesian digital products or technologies in Saudi Arabia and the establishment of a digital task force.

Indonesia has received a very welcoming reception from the GCC countries in digital cooperation. The future prospects of this cooperation seems positive as Jakarta is increasing its efforts to improve technology and communication access with the Gulf countries.

Hanif Muhammad






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