Bandung, West Java (ANTARA) - Minister of Co-operatives and Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) Teten Masduki pressed for improving the regulation to protect the domestic textile industry from the override of imported products.

In a dialogue with textile business players in Bandung District, West Java, on Sunday, the minister stated that the current regulation still cannot protect the domestic textile industry at the retailer to producer levels from the dominance of imported products.

According to Masduki, the safeguarding policy is less effective, as business players find that one piece of clothing can be sold under Rp25 thousand (US$1.62) online.

He remarked that textile business players in Bandung had urged the government to improve the regulation in the wake of the ease with which quite cheap products are entering Indonesia.

"That means that the regulation is not running well. However, we do not know whether (the imported products) enter the country unofficially or are not reported to the customs," he stated.

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He explained that the business players' requests will be further coordinated at the central government level through the Ministry of State Secretariat, considering that the Trade Ministry and the Finance Ministry have the authorities related to import regulation.

He also highlighted the business players' proposal for the government to set a special basic price for imported products.

Such a policy has been implemented by China, which regulates that prices of goods entering from outside China must not be lower than the cost of goods sold (COGS) in order to protect domestic industries.

Masduki highlighted that predatory pricing on imported products sold online had swooped away crowds of customers at wholesale centers, such as ITC Kebon Kelapa and Tanah Abang Market, as the sellers there cannot compete with the prices online.

"I will convey this issue. Imported products are still too cheap and very easy to enter that they impact domestic products," the minister remarked.

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Translator: Ricky P, Kenzu
Editor: Yuni Arisandy Sinaga
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