Jakarta, 14 March 2017 – Indonesian furniture and craft industry still has huge potential to grow. The optimism is one of the spirits that drives Indonesian Furniture Industry and Craft Association (HIMKI) to host the Indonesia International Furniture Expo (IFEX). The exhibition serves as the perfect medium to display quality furniture and craft products from various regions in Indonesia to international buyers.
Each and every year, the exhibition has successfully become the preference for international buyers who want to seek for furniture and craft products with the latest design innovation created by the famous Indonesian craftsmanship. International buyers regard the skill of Indonesian craftsmen as one of the most appealing factors in the country’s furniture and craft products.
One of IFEX’s buyers from London, Caleeb, said the organizing of this year’s IFEX is better than the previous year. The quality of the products being displayed in this year’s IFEX, he added, also improved significantly. Simon, one of the exhibitors from France, said his company never missed the opportunity to take part in IFEX. He said the company is already planning to take part for next year’s IFEX.
“Visitors and exhibitors’ loyalty and satisfaction is one of the keys to the success of IFEX. We hope in the future IFEX will continue to grow even bigger. This will be very beneficial to the furniture and craft industry as well as increasing the country’s economy,” said HIMKI Vice Chairman of Promotion and Marketing, Bernardus Arwin.
He also hopes that IFEX can be an exhibition hub in the region and enable Indonesia to be the main destination for international buyers. “If buyers from the U.S. or Europe want to find high quality products in Southeast Asia regions, they do not need to visit every country in the region. They can simply come to IFEX since all the products will be available in our exhibition,” said Arwin.
As of the third day (13/03), IFEX has attracted more than 10,000 local and international buyers. “This is a good sign to the country’s furniture and craft industry since it shows that we have already managed to secure our position as one of world’s best furniture and craft producers. We realize that we still have much homework to do to answer the industry’s challenges to realize export target value of US$5 billion within the next three years,” said HIMKI Chairman, Soenoto.
The Minister of Industry of the Republic of Indonesia, Airlangga Hartarto, also highlighted IFEX’s role as one of the key promotion tools to Indonesian furniture and craft industry. During his visit to the exhibition, he hopes IFEX can be the milestone for furniture and craft exhibition in Indonesia. “On behalf of the government, we would like to invite international buyers to join us in future IFEX to witness the development of Indonesian furniture and craft industry that shows significant improvement each and every year,” said Hartarto. He also admitted that the designs in this year’s exhibition represent the progress of the country’s furniture and craft industry.
Creativity and Technology
Creativity and technology are the two aspects that are important to further develop the country’s furniture and craft industry. Creativity is highly related to designs and market taste. In his presentation during ‘The Global Edge of Asian Design’ seminar, Professor Imam Buchori said that every country has its own uniqueness. The design of products for American market is definitely different to designs for Asian or European markets. Good designer, said Buchori, must pay attention to the characteristics of each country to enable him to create products that meets target markets’ taste and needs. Technology, on the other hand, provides significant support to the creation of innovative designs. “We must embed technology in the design process if we want to remain competitive in global market,” said Buchori.
Bernardus Arwin also admitted the significant role of technology in supporting the country’s furniture industry. He said the trends in the industry are changing rapidly and the players are forced to keep up with the change to remain competitive. “One of the ways to keep up with the rapid change is by implementing the right technology,” said Arwin.
The use of technology in the industry enables industry players to create products faster than those with no technology and is more effective. For example, the ‘powder coating’ technology, which was discussed in one of IFEX’s seminar sessions, described the importance of technology to support the development of the industry. By using the technology, furniture manufacturers can produce stronger and more durable products with thicker, smoother and more equal coating. “I believe if we can keep up and adapt to the technology, our furniture industry will continue to grow significantly,” concluded Arwin.
HIMKI is the result of the merger of two previous organizations in furniture and craft industry, AMKRI and ASMINDO. The two agreed to merge into one organization to increase the competitiveness of Indonesian furniture and craft products in local and international markets, and to be the single medium that is solid and big and can be the government’s partner in supporting the industry. HIMKI was declared on May 31st in Jakarta. HIMKI is established based on similarity in the vision, mission, and purposes among its members to collectively support the country’s furniture and craft industry. The organization is expected to become the institution that is aspirational and accommodating with the spirit of equality among its members.
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Maulana S Jaelani