Gov't Plans to Create Digital Catalog of Products by Local SMEs

The Ministry of Trade plans to compile a digital catalog of products offered by small and medium enterprises and to provide them with digital marketing training in an effort to boost the sale of domestic products online. (B1 Photo/Joanito de Saojoao)

By : Adinda Normala | on 2:51 PM February 23, 2018
Category : Business

Jakarta. The Ministry of Trade plans to compile a digital catalog of products offered by small and medium enterprises and to provide them with digital marketing training in an effort to boost the sale of domestic products online.

Indonesian products only make up 10 percent of the total sold on local e-commerce websites, while the rest are imported, the ministry estimates.

Only around 100,000 of the roughly 2.5 million products offered for sale on local online marketplace BliBli, controlled by Indonesian cigarette giant Djarum, are of domestic origin, a company representative said.

The ministry previously said it planned to impose a 20 percent cap on the number of imported items for sale on online marketplaces such as Tokopedia, Bukalapak and Mataharimall.com, but this is unlikely to be implemented now.

One of the reasons is that it is difficult to differentiate between local and imported products, Trade Minister Enggartiasto Lukita said on Thursday (22/02).

In addition, most of Indonesia's 55 million small and medium enterprises are not yet digitally literate, which prevents them from selling their items online.

"We will create our own platform at the ministry … so each online marketplace can access a list of accredited products offered by small and medium businesses," Enggartiasto said after a meeting with e-commerce players.

Mohamad Rosihan, head of retail education at the Indonesia E-commerce Association (idEA), said this can facilitate online marketplaces to draw more products from local businesses.

"We hope this will be a database, which will make it easier for us to monitor the products by small and medium businesses that can be sold on e-commerce platforms," Rosihan said.

Indonesia has seen a sharp increase in the number of internet users over the past few years, many of whom have started to shop online, the minister said.

According to a survey by the Indonesian Internet Service Providers Association (APJII), the country had 143 million internet users in 2017, more than double than five years ago.

Data from the Central Statistics Agency (BPS) meanwhile shows that imports of consumer goods rose 15 percent to $14.2 billion last year, compared with a year earlier. This consisted mainly of clothing and home appliances, which are often sold online.

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