JAKARTA: President Joko Widodo said on Thursday (Mar 4) that Indonesian consumers should be encouraged to “love” domestic brands and “hate” foreign products, as he urged officials to stay the course in pushing for 5 per cent economic growth this year.
Speaking during a Ministry of Trade national meeting, Jokowi, as the president is popularly known, urged industries to use local components rather than import them. People should be proud of local products, he said.
He added that branding is important and local brands or products of small and medium-size enterprises (SMEs) must be displayed at malls and given the best spots. Foreign brands can be displayed at the side, said the president.
"Because our population, the population of Indonesia, is more than 270 million people. We should be the most loyal consumers of our own products," he said.
“Calls to love our own products ... must continue to be echoed ... Also, echo hate to foreign products."
He added: "Love our goods, hate products from abroad. So that our people will really become loyal consumers of Indonesian products."
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The ministry's employees should be creative and innovative in pushing for economic growth, he also said.
“The growth target of 5 per cent as stipulated in the state budget must really be achieved. Once again, 2021 is a year of recovery that must be based on a spirit of optimism.
“For that, I specifically ask the ranks of the Ministry of Trade not to work only normatively. There must be creative breakthroughs. There must be innovative breakthroughs," said Mr Widodo.
He also said that the digital trade sector must be developed.
“Indonesia must not fall victim to unfair digital trade. Other countries have experienced this a lot and we must not fall victim to unfair digital trade,” said the president.
Indonesia saw an economic contraction of 2.07 per cent last year, its first annual contraction since the Asian financial crisis in 1998.
However, Finance Minister Sri Mulyani noted that the contraction was relatively moderate compared to other countries.