Jakarta (ANTARA News) - Trade Minister Marie Elka Pangestu has launched a National Shoes Day, here Wednesday, to encourage the Indonesian people to wear Indonesia-made shoes especially on every Friday.

On the occasion, Minister Pangestu wore brown snake-leather shoes, while football player Bambang Pamungkas (31) wore black leather shoes.

"Hopefully this movement could be followed by other ministries and institutions, rolling like a snow ball," she said.

The trade ministry`s cooperative is holding a domestic-made shoes exhibition from March 9 to 15, 2011, and plans to open several Indonesian shoes shops to promote the Indonesian-made products.

Minister Pangestu believed that Indonesian shoes were quite competitive, including those produced by Yongki Komaladi, Gino Mariani, Sledger, Andre Valentino, Andre Convert, Studio Nine, Elle Paris, Absolut, Kenny, Piero, Tomkins and Specs.

Deputy Trade Minister Mahendra Siregar urged domestic shoes producers to improve their products` quality, design and promotion.

"We choose Bambang Pamungkas to become an icon of quality symbol for victory," he said.

The Indonesia-made Shoes Day is launched to follow the step of the National Batik Day declared few years ago, to win the public heart, according to Siregar.

Chairman of the Indonesian Shoes Producer Association (Aprisindo) Eddy Widjanarko appreciated the government for initiating the launching of the Indonesia Shoes Day.

"The exports have been tremendous. In 2009, it reached 1.7 billion US dollars, and in 2010 up to November 2.4 billion US dollar. Our shoes quality is good, we have exported shoes to 148 countries," he said.

Widjanarko also called on the Indonesian people to love domestic-made shoes in order to increase the production.

The domestic shoes products currently dominate around 70 percent of shoes market for the middle and up markets, and 50 percent of the lower and middle markets.

"We should be able to dominate the lower and middle markets," Eddy Widjanarko said.
(T. M035/F001/HAJM)

Editor: Priyambodo RH
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