Director General of Export Development (PEN) Arlinda Imbang Jaya said in a written statement that Indonesian exporters have a great chance in Australia especially with the presence of the Indonesian diaspora and that countrys close proximity to Indonesia.
"The Indonesian diaspora in Australia numbers about 80 thousand. Among them, there are also buyers of Indonesian products, especially processed foods. This opportunity should be used optimally in order to increase national exports," said Arlinda.
Accompanied by the Indonesian trade attach in Canberra and Indonesian Trade Promotion Centre (ITPC) officials in Sydney, Arlinda met Suliyanti, one of the Indonesian expatriates in Australia, at the end of November. The owner of the company Eastern Cross Trading Pty. Ltd. imports a lot of Indonesian products.
The existence of the Indonesian diaspora abroad is a national asset that deserves attention and support. Diaspora can be a representative of the Government of Indonesia to promote the potential of Indonesian products and services, which include superior products and services, investment, and tourism.
"Good cooperation between the directorate general with the diaspora abroad will increase the effectiveness of the promotion of Indonesian products in the world market," said Arlinda.
On the occasion, Suliyanti said the opportunities for Indonesian products in Australia were widening. Support of the Indonesian diaspora in Australia cannot be doubted. Sydney, one of Australias biggest industrial cities, is home to about 25 percent of the Indonesian diaspora living in that country.
"The city is a gateway for Indonesian products exported to Australia. However, there is a possibility of local products also entering through other cities in Australia," said Suliyanti.
The Ministry of Trade is working with Suliyanti to open "Home Indonesia," a showroom for products of Indonesia in Sydney. Aside from being a permanent showroom, Home Indonesia will also be used to facilitate a wide range of tourism and investment promotion activities.
Arlinda added that support and cooperation of all parties are needed to create Home Indonesia, including the support of the Ministry of Tourism and the Investment Coordinating Board (BKPM).
The Ministry of Trade will coordinate with the Consulate General in Sydney and the local government on the licensing process for the development of Home Indonesia. It is expected that Home Indonesia, whose construction is expected to start in 2017, will enhance non-oil exports of Indonesia to Australia.
In 2015, the total trade between Indonesia and Australia was US$8.51 billion. Of this, Indonesian exports totaled $3.70 billion while imports were valued at $4.81 billion. Indonesia had a trade deficit of $1.11 billion.