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Indonesia doubles trade missions to Muslim markets in export push

Widodo promotes textiles, footwear and train cars, competing with Chinese goods

A man shops for grocery items at a store in Peshawar, Pakistan. Indonesia is tapping Muslim markets such as Pakistan as export destinations.   © Reuters

JAKARTA -- Indonesia is accelerating a strategy to utilize its connections with the Muslim world to tap new export markets and boost trade amid downward pressure from U.S.-China trade tensions.

President Joko Widodo embarked on a mission to the Muslim world with a string of visits to countries including Turkey, Pakistan, Bangladesh and Saudi Arabia over the past year. While the political objective of the visits -- to cement his Muslim credentials amid a bid for re-election -- was obvious, the economic aspect only became apparent later.

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