Jakarta (ANTARA) - Following the deadly coronavirus outbreak, Indonesia will seek to substitute imports of industrial raw materials, of which 30 percent was supplied from China, Industry Minister Agus Gumiwang Kartasasmita stated.

"Some 30 percent of raw materials for the manufacturing industry is still imported from China. We will prepare the substitution," Kartasasmita stated here on Wednesday.

He chose to not speculate on whether Chinese industries will reduce production capacity or halt operations over the outbreak.

However, he stated that industries in Indonesia must seek ways out, including to find the alternative to raw material sources from other countries or replace them with domestic production.

"Of course, this will highlight Indonesia’s potential to create and establish industries that will replace raw material imports from elsewhere, including from China. We are moving toward this to encourage a healthier trade balance," he elaborated.

The minister has invited industry associations to invest in raw material production at home.

"However, for the medium- and long-term, it is an opportunity for Indonesia and new players, who want to invest in Indonesia in the import substitution industry," he stated.

Kartasasmita stated that the coronavirus outbreak can affect the exports of industrial production to China, as demand in the country will decline.

"We forecast that demand will decline due to the coronavirus outbreak with the declining purchasing power in China. We have to be more aggressive to find non-conventional markets, such as Africa and Latin America," he remarked. Related news: Indonesia bans live animal imports from China

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Translator: Sella Panduarsa G, Sri Haryati
Editor: Fardah Assegaf
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