Hacking Trade Growth: Leveraging the talent of young people to amplify Australia-Indonesia trade

young people

As both countries are set to capture the opportunities presented by the Indonesia-Australia Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement, this AIC Backgrounder explores how young people can play a critical role in boosting trade growth.

Read or download the full backgrounder: Hacking Trade Growth

New approaches needed to amplify trade growth

Bilateral trade has been growing slowly over the past five years. If business as usual continues, Indonesia could fall further behind Australia’s top trading partners.

To break into Australia’s top 10 trading partners, Indonesia’s trade with Australia would need to grow 4.7 times faster than the current rate.

This exponential growth can be achieved by a combination of sustaining current growth rates in leading sectors and unlocking new scalable sources of growth.

Younger Indonesians and Australians are key to growing trade

Younger Indonesians and Australians are critical to both approaches. Indonesian youth hold the key to the country’s efforts to climb up the global value chain and escape the middle income trap, while Australian youth lead the rest of the country in embracing doing business with Indonesia.

Watch the highlights of Ghian Tjandaputra’s presentation to the Indonesia Australia Business Council Conference 2019:

Embracing Indonesia-relevant skills and experience can boost revenue and amplify trade growth.

These skills can be found in the talent of young Australians and Indonesians engaged in people-to-people initiatives, as they are the ones most likely to have the skills, reach and relationships to effectively do business.


Businesses, governments and communities in both nations need to collaborate to fully leverage talent in the people-to-people ecosystem to grow bilateral trade, in the:

  • Short term: by engaging people within the Australia-Indonesia people-to-people ecosystem in key activities which promote trade
  • Medium term: by creating a cohort of IA-CEPA champions to translate benefits to communities
  • Long term: by developing skills most in demand by leading and growth sectors of bilateral trade

Read or download Ghian Tjandaputra’s presentation to the Indonesia Australia Business Council Conference 2019

This paper was presented at the Indonesia Australia Business Council Conference on 5 November 2019 in Bali.