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Indonesian trade minister resigns

English.news.cn   2014-01-31 15:20:47

Gita Wiryawan (L) announces his resignation as Indonesian Trade Minister in Jakarta, Indonesia, Jan. 31, 2014. According to Wiryawan's statement, he wanted to focus on following the presidential candidate convention in the Democratic Party. (Xinhua/Veri Sanovri)

JAKARTA, Jan. 31 (Xinhua) -- Indonesian Trade Minister Gita Wirjawan said on Friday that he had resigned from his position as he wants to focus on his campaign to win presidential nomination for the country's ruling Democratic Party.

Wirjawan has been vying for presidential nomination by President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono's Democratic Party, competing with nine others.

He said that Yudhoyono already approved his resignation.

"I already met with the president and he accepted it," Wirjawan told reporters at the Trade Ministry.

"Regarding the importance of the convention of Democratic Party for the interest of nation. I think I have to fully give my energy and time to succeed this event," he said.

Wirjawan is a former banker and former chairman of the country' s investment coordinating board. During his tenure, foreign investment has flowed rapidly into the Southeast Asia's largest economy.

He said that young voters and women were among his target to obtain more votes.

The Democratic Party had been the biggest party in the country since the 2009 polls, but recently its popularity has steeply declined, according to a survey, partly due to implication of several of its top politicians were involved in graft.

Yudhoyono, who swept to power in the country's first direct presidential polls in 2004, comes to the end of his second and final five-year term this year.

The world's fourth most populous country, Indonesia is to hold direct legislative polls in April and direct presidential election in July.

To be able to nominate presidential candidate, political parties are required to secure at least 25 percent of the votes or 20 percent of the seats.

The parties could form alliances should they fail to reach the threshold to nominate a candidate.

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Editor: Zhu Ningzhu
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