Since long time ago Indonesia archiplago (Nusantara) has become an important region for world trade. Currently, Indonesia and ASEAN countries are considered as second most important region after the oil-rich Middle East, in the world economy. It makes China, Japan and the United States compete for influence in the ASEAN region. Excellent stability in the ASEAN region which is based on brotherhood allied become more distinct values than the always volatile Middle East.
Indonesia and ASEAN region is poised to grow between 5.7 and 6.4 per cent in 2011, while world economy is expected to grow around 3.3 up to 3.7 percent only.
Here is a snippet of history as a comparison to the current Indonesia situation.
Around the seventh century until the 12th century AD, or for about 500 years, established the kingdom of Srivijaya that trade with India, China, and Arab. Commodities produced by Srivijaya is camphor, aloes wood, clove, nutmeg, cardamom, ivory, gold, and tin. Srivijaya is a maritime kingdom and rely to maritime fleets for shipping and international trade, while also keeping its territory. Srivijaya by Wikipedia
Majapahit era, around the 13th century until the 16th century AD, or for about 300 years, the export commodities include: pepper, salt, cloth, cockatoo. Imported commodities are: pearls, gold, silver, silk, a variety of ceramic products, various products of iron. International trade was with India, China, Khmer and Siam. Majapahit was an agrarian and trading country. Supported with the advance of agriculture with irrigation systems in the area around the Berantas river, Bengawan Solo river, and lowland at East Java are suitable for planting rice. Majapahit also have a strong fleet to sail and do the export import trade. Majapahit by Wikipedia
Exports of $ 158.1 billion (2010 estimate). Exported products are: oil and gas, electrical products, plywood, textiles, rubber. The main export partners are: Japan 16.3%, China 9.9%, U.S. 9.1%, Singapore 8.7%, South Korea 8%, India 6.3%, Malaysia 5.9% (2010).
Imports of $ 127.4 billion (2010 estimate). Imported goods are: equipment and machinery, chemical products, fuel oil, foodstuffs. The main import partners are: China 15.1%, Singapore 14.9%, Japan 12.5%, U.S. 6.9%, Malaysia 6.4%, South Korea 5.7%, Thailand 5.5% (2010).
Economy of Indonesia by Wikipedia