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Oke Nurwan
Director General of Foreign Trade-MoT

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    Some time ago during the opening of the ASMINDO International Furniture and Craft Summit 2018 at the 2018 Indonesia Trade Expo which took place at the International Convention Exhibition (ICE) BSD City, Minister of Trade Enggartiasto Lukita said the key to increasing furniture and craft exports was to follow and meet market tastes to compete and win the global market. If entrepreneurs are able to adjust to the taste of the consumers, their products will be the buyers' favorites.

    As we know, the availability of raw materials for producing furniture and crafts in Indonesia is an advantage hold by no other country: It is one of Indonesia's strengths and must be supported by producing value-added products. During 2017, the exports of furniture and craft products represented a share of 31% of the exports of all wood products from Indonesia (Statistic Indonesia 2018), amounting to 1.5 billion USD, which is a growth of 1.5% compared to the exports in 2016. The United States is still the main destination for exports of Indonesian furniture and craft products, followed by the European Union and Japan. These countries were the destinations of more than 64% of the exports in 2017 and are therefore categorized as traditional markets.

    The government's strategy in this regard is to instruct the Ministry of Trade to develop markets by constantly inviting exporters, associations and related ministries and agencies to share ideas in order to improve the export, in particular the export to non-traditional markets such as Africa, Euroasia, the Middle East, South Asia and the ASEAN countries. The government.

    facilitates exports by opening new markets through trade agreements with other countries. The government has an obligation to support the exporters to increase the exports of Indonesia's flagship products. The synergy of the government and the exporters is important with regard to succeeding in reaching the target of the export. If this synergy continues, the growth of furniture and craft exports will increase constantly. In addition to the abundance of raw materials, the product output of Indonesian craft has been well-known worldwide. Nevertheless, the mass-produced furniture products must fulfill aspects of precision and efficiency, thereby making it possible to offer them at a competitive market price, preserving their high potential and making them a pillar for the future.

    The government has committed itself to fully support all efforts in decreasing illegal logging practice and in increasing the legal wood trade, which can give value added for Indonesia's products in the international market. The government continues the efforts to improve the governance and transparency of the production and trade of wood products, which has been in line with the framework of certification of sustainable forest management.

    In addition, the trade war between the US and China must be used to enhance exports and enter new markets through various trade agreements, where both countries have quite large exports of furniture products. So it is very possible for Indonesian furniture to also expand its global market share. This opportunity must be applied properly while upholding the principles of openness and competitiveness. We must be present with high value-added products using the best raw material. To conclude, the government fully supports the holding of an Indonesian furniture and craft fair. By participating in the JIFFINA fair, industry players in Indonesia have the opportunity to display high-quality furniture and craft products, thus enabling them to enlarge their export market share.

    Posted on 07 January 2019

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