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HIMKI Ask the Government to Remove the Barriers to Furniture Industry Competitiveness

Entrepreneurs who are members of the Indonesian Furniture and Crafts Industry Association (HIMKI) are optimistic that the furniture and craft industry will continue to experience growth. Because, Indonesia has natural resources (SDA) and human resources (HR) that are well managed.

"Indonesia can become a leader in the furniture and craft industry in the ASEAN region. With the availability of abundant raw materials for forest products, large numbers of skilled human resources, this industry should be a resilient industry," said Secretary General of HIMKI Abdul Sobur on the sidelines National Leadership Meeting (Rapimnas) in Bali.

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However, Sobur explained, there are still contradictory policies that make the national furniture and handicraft industry less developed, including the timber verification and legality system (SVLK) imposed by the government. "With the implementation of SVLK, the price of raw materials for the wood industry is not competitive compared to our competitors such as Malaysia and Vietnam, because to take care of SVLK and several supporting licenses require huge costs," he explained

For this reason, continued Sobur, entrepreneurs working in the furniture and craft industry sector who are members of the HIMKI have requested that the government abolish SVLK for the furniture and craft industry. According to him, the SVLK implementation policy has an impact on the non-optimal performance of national exports, given the complexity and the high cost of processing these documents.

"Whereas at present, the furniture industry is competing with foreign furniture industry players such as Malaysia, Vietnam, China, and several producing countries in the European and American regions," said Sobur.

In addition to implementing SVLK, Sobur continued, his party also asked the government to close log exports. "If it refers to the matrix of industrial growth, then the plan to open the log export tap must be prevented because some of the raw materials will eventually be completely exported as happened several years ago to rattan raw materials," said Sobur.

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According to him, export of raw materials is very contrary to the downstream program that has been launched by the government. Sobur admitted, the insistence on the opening of export log faucet and rattan raw materials caused unrest for businesses engaged in finished goods, bearing in mind that the wood raw materials in Indonesia were badly needed by domestic industrial players.

"Thus, if the raw material export faucets are opened there will be a decline in the competitiveness of national industries. On the other hand, the log export policy is contrary to the policies adopted by many countries in the world as producers of logs, such as, Brazil, the United States, Ukraine, Malaysia, and other, "said Sobur.

Sobur explained, marketing, promotion, and market penetration were still the problems currently faced by the national furniture and craft industry. For this reason, it is expected that well-managed promotional and marketing activities will take place both domestically and abroad with programmed schedules throughout the year.

Product design and development is the key to success in competing in the global market. Therefore, the availability of supporting facilities such as Design centers and design protection (IPR) is absolutely necessary in the production base areas as a condition of independence in the supply of design.

"The design institution in question must be managed comprehensively and continuously. This is absolutely necessary as the main requirement for the formation of industrial competitiveness which is supported by quality product designs that are market-viable," he explained.

Sobur said, education and training to improve human resource competence are very important for the national furniture and craft industry. "For this reason, regulations are needed in the effort to supply and develop skilled human resources, namely, work programs arranged by the government and associations in an effort to provide vocational-educated skilled workers who are ready to work in the furniture and craft industry," he explained.

In the near future, said Sobur, HIMKI will also form regional representatives (DPD HIMKI) in 34 provinces in Indonesia. Until the end of 2019 it is planned that DPD HIMKI Bantul, Palembang, West Nusa Tenggara, Southeast Sulawesi, Central Sulawesi, Central Kalimantan and South Kalimantan will be formed soon.

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At present, DPD HIMKI is in the Greater Jakarta Area, Bandung and Priangan, Cirebon Raya, Semarang Raya, Jepara Raya, Solo Raya, D.I. Yogyakarta, Sleman Raya, East Java, Bali, North Sumatra and Aceh.

For local sales and increased exports of furniture and handicraft products nationwide, HIMKI has formed a special team that manages and curates the products to be selected which will fill the showroom / homedecor shop for HIMKI members as a professional and attractive shopping place. For this reason, HIMKI has decided the location in Bali.

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