An economic cooperation agreement between the US and Indonesia has further deepened their ties, US Ambassador to Indonesia Robert O. Blake has said.

Blake further stated, in a recent speech at the Indonesia-based President University, that the economic partnership, established in 2010, is important to both countries.

Last year, the US was Indonesia’s fourth largest importer and the largest buyer of Indonesian rubber products, clothes, footwear, fish, coffee and tea, furniture products, toys, and musical instruments, the US diplomat noted.

According to a study jointly conducted by Ernst and Young (a UK-based multinational professional service firm), the Paramadina Public Policy Institute, and the Gajah Mada University, American firms in the past eight years have poured 65 billion USD into Indonesia, mainly in oil and gas, mining, and manufacturing sectors. The research said US investors expect to invest another 61 billion USD in the next five years if the business and regulatory environment in Indonesia is conducive to further investments.

There are almost 200,000 Indonesians working directly for US companies operating in Indonesia. Indonesians make up 95 percent of the workforce in American-owned companies, with many in the senior management levels, the ambassador said.-VNA