Indonesian crafts need marketing boost

The Jakarta Post | Wed, April 26, 2017 | 03:50 pm

President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo speaks at the opening of 19th Inacraft in Jakarta on Wednesday. Jokowi hopes that local craft makers pay more attention to marketing to boost exports. (JP/Anton Hermansyah)
President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo has said the craft industry needs a marketing boost in order to lure global buyers.

Based on his own experience as a former furniture exporter, Jokowi noted that foreign buyers were unfamiliar with a lot of local craft products.

“We have quality crafts, but quality alone is not enough,” Jokowi said in his opening remark at the 2017 International Handicraft Trade Fair (Inacraft) on Wednesday at the Jakarta Convention Center.

“Foreign buyers have difficulty obtaining Indonesian products. I used to participate in Inacraft in the early 2000s, so I know that promotion is our challenge,” he added.

The world craft market in 2016 slipped 2.11 percent year-on-year (yoy) to US$48.6 billion, according to Trade Ministry data.

Contrary to the international downward trend, Indonesia’s craft exports increased 1.35 percent yoy to $685.26 million, representing 1.41 percent of the global craft market.

The President suggested that to gain a competitive edge, Indonesian craft makers should pay attention to three aspects, namely product specification, pricing and timely delivery. He also emphasized that good packaging was a way to attract buyers.

“Please package your products as attractively as possible so that buyers will fall in love with them at first sight,” Jokowi said.