Indonesian leather, footwear producers advised to improve branding

JAKARTA, May 7 (Xinhua) -- In a bid to expand access to domestic and foreign markets, Indonesian leather product producers were advised to improve the branding of their products, an Indonesian official said here on Thursday.

Speaking on the sidelines of a leather and footwear exhibition opening session here, Indonesian Industry Minister Saleh Husin said that Indonesian leather and footwear products have good qualities that were well-regarded by markets in foreign countries.

But due to lack of good branding, the nation's products were rebranded by producers from foreign countries for their advantages, he added.

Husin said that government through his ministry is eager to provide assistance for national businessmen in leather and footwear industry to address their branding so as to improve the added-value on their products. "The aim of branding program is to make domestic products have the capability to compete in global market,"he said.

Besides providing the assistance, the Industry Ministry would support national industry associations in establishing business cooperation with footwear associations from foreign countries.

Leather and footwear industry contributes 0.27 percent to the nation's non-oil and gas exports that supported 17.87 percent of the nation's Gross Domestic Product (GDP) in 2014.

According to the data released by the ministry, total investment of national leather and footwear industry was 11.3 trillion rupiah (about 858.8 million U.S. dollars) from 394 firms that employed 643,000 people as of last year.

Indonesia's footwear export stood at 4.11 billion U.S. dollars in 2014, or 6.44 percent higher than 3.86 billion U.S. dollars recorded in 2013.

Indonesian leather and footwear products were exported to the United States, Belgium, Germany, the United Kingdom and Japan.

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