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Australian leader to continue free-trade talks in Indonesia

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By Associated Press

Australian Foreign Minister Julie Bishop, left, talks with her Indonesian counterpart Retno Marsudi during their meeting in Jakarta on sidelines of Indian Ocean Rim Association (IORA) Leaders' Summit in Jakarta, Indonesia, Sunday, March 5, 2017. (AP Photo/Tatan Syuflana | Manila Bulletin)

Australian Foreign Minister Julie Bishop, left, talks with her Indonesian counterpart Retno Marsudi during their meeting in Jakarta on sidelines of Indian Ocean Rim Association (IORA) Leaders’ Summit in Jakarta, Indonesia, Sunday, March 5, 2017. (AP Photo/Tatan Syuflana | Manila Bulletin)

Australia’s prime minister says he is looking forward to discussing a free-trade deal with Indonesia while attending a regional forum in Jakarta.

Malcom Turnbull on Tuesday will attend the first Indian Ocean Rim Association leaders’ summit in the 20-year history of the 21-nation organization.

Turnbull’s one-day visit to Jakarta comes nine days after Joko “Jokowi” Widodo ended his first visit Australian as Indonesia’s president.

The leaders used that Sydney visit to commit to finalizing a bilateral free-trade agreement this year after 17 years of negotiations. Jokowi said the deal must remove all Australian barriers to the importation of Indonesian palm oil and paper.

Turnbull on Monday welcomed trade concessions that Indonesia has already made, including reduced tariffs on Australian sugar and fewer restrictions on Australian live cattle imports.

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