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IFEX 2023 : Sky Is The Limit, International Expo


The Coordinating Minister for the Economy Airlangga Hartanto in his opening speech at the Indonesia International Furniture Expo (IFEX) asked whether the attendees understood why the carrier planning of furniture industrialists was so high. "The furniture brought the entrepreneur to become president," he said, joking. "I encourage the minister of industry to be more focused and prioritize it," he continued.


In another part of his speech, Airlangga emphasized that the furniture industry is a foreign exchange earning industry. "Because HIMKI (Indonesian Furniture and Handicraft Industry Association. Ed.) only gives prizes in US Dollars. I am sure that there is no day without foreign exchange in this industry. There are no dollars without foreign exchange," he said while laughing broadly.


According to Airlangga, last year's export achievement of USD 3.5 billion is still considered insufficient. He admitted that the competitors for the national furniture industry were very large, namely China and Vietnam. “That should be our benchmark. There is no reason for us to lose to both of them," he said. "I once asked Abdul Sobur and Sunoto, what is the limit of the furniture industry? The answer was, "Nothing. Sky is the limit," he said.


That is why, Airlangga is pushing for concrete solutions to the problems faced, starting from the availability and security of the supply of raw materials. "This is a classic and please be resolved by the relevant ministries," he said.

Regarding the complaint regarding the obligation to own the Timber Legality Assurance System (SVLK), Airlangga revealed that it had been decided that the cost of obtaining this certification for MSMEs would be borne by the government. This task will fall under the Ministry of Environment and Forestry. "So please push again so that SVLK obligations are no longer a burden to entrepreneurs. If it is still not fulfilled, then I ask the minister of industry to facilitate it," he said.

The Coordinating Minister for Airlangga also revealed that his party had asked the Indonesian Export Development Institute (LPEI) to make a road map so that they could reach the target of USD 5 billion by 2024. This requires the intervention of the minister of industry, at least to finance it, including opening new markets and promoting them.

Previously, HIMKI Presidium Chairman Abdul Sobur revealed that there was already low interest financing support. "There are already 54 HIMKI members who have received funding from LPEI with an annual interest rate of 6 percent," he said in IFEX's opening speech.


He also stressed the dualism of certification which has burdened the rattan furniture and handicraft industry so far. He expressed HIMKI's wish to only enforce the SVLK upstream, "No longer on all lines from upstream to downstream". In addition, he urged the government to be able to synchronize the implementation of the FSC and SVLK, because they are basically similar.


In the 4-day exhibition which takes place from 9-12 March 2023, around 600 exhibitors are involved with an estimated total of more than 10,000 visitors. This exhibition marks the revival of the furniture industry and wood crafts in Indonesia. The furniture and handicraft industry is actually able to show its resilience in 2021, which can earn foreign exchange of USD 3.5 billion. It jumped by 26% compared to the previous year. A surge that was completely unexpected, and actually occurred when the Covid-19 pandemic was raging. However, this surge did not last long because it had fallen dramatically since mid-2022.


The exhibition, which Abdul Sobur claims is the largest exhibition in the Southeast Asia region, occupies an area of 60,000 square meters and is attended by more than 600 exhibitors. While visitors are targeted to reach 12,000 people who come from abroad. IFEX this time is expected to reap transactions of USD 250 million, with a follow-up of USD 1 billion in the following three months. "About 35 percent of turnover is obtained from orders through this exhibition," he said. That is why it is planned to hold a similar exhibition in September 2023.

The atmosphere at the 2023 international furniture exhibition (Ifex) at the Jakarta International Expo, Kemayoran, Jakarta, Thursday (9/3/2023). The exhibition which will last until Sunday (12/3/2023) will be attended by more than 500 participants from within and outside the country.


The atmosphere at the 2023 international furniture exhibition (Ifex) at the Jakarta International Expo, Kemayoran, Jakarta, Thursday (9/3/2023). The exhibition which will last until Sunday (12/3/2023) will be attended by more than 500 participants from within and outside the country.

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