RI sets footwear export target at US$3.2 bln

Jakarta (ANTARA News) - The government has set itself a target of exporting US$3.2 billion worth of footwear in 2011, Trade Minister Mari Elka Pangestu said.

The exports are expected to increase by US$6 million from that in the previous year which stood at US$2.6 billion, the minister said here on Wednesday.

"The increase is high because investment over the past two years also increased significantly, so that we set a target of US$3.2 billion this year and US$5 billion next year," the minister said.

Chairman of the Indonesian Shoe-makers Association (Aprisindo) Eddy Widjanarko also has set a target of increasing the values of the association`s exports to US$1 billion per annum, hoping that the government would provide its support.

Mari E Pangestu said said that the government would continue to encourage and facilitate shoe-making industries to increase the quality of their products, designs and promotions so that Indonesia`s market shares overseas would also increase.

"Quality must be maintained. We have to fight with a good quality and reasonable prices. Therefore, it must be facilitated to improve and make its quality and standards good," Mari E Pangestu said.

The minister said that the main competitors of Indonesian shoes were those of China and Vietnam.

According to Eddy, the government`s support was needed by small and medium scale shoe maker industries because in general the quality and design of domestically produce shoes had been improved, thus they were able to compete in the world market.

"Indonesia`s shoe products have been exported to 148 countries. The quality and design of domestic shoes are already good. For sport shoes, we are the third best after China and Vietnam and for rubber shoes we are the forth best after China, Vietnam and India," he said.(*)