Food sector experiences biggest growth among small industries

REPUBLIKA.CO.ID, JAKARTA — Indonesia’s Minister of Industry Airlangga Hartanto said the food sector witnessed the biggest growth among small and medium scale businesses over the past two years.

“Food sector has been growing at 40 percent, the highest rate. There are also clothing-based and chemical-based industries as well as building raw material industries,” the minister stated at a press conference on “Two Years of Jokowi-JK Government’s Performance,” here on Tuesday.

According to Airlangga, industries such as furniture, metal-based industries as well as electronics also contributed to the growth of small and medium industries. Data from the Ministry of Industry recorded that there are now 2,985 small and medium businesses in the food sector, while building materials and handicraft industries claimed a total of 1,698 businesses.

Meanwhile, the small and medium-scale enterprises (SMEs) have 1,150 businesses in the clothing field. Airlangga noted that during 2015-2016, the ministry trained 12,687 new entrepreneurial candidates to support the growth of small industries.

The minister also explained the development of the SME business units in 2014 and 2015. Their number went up by 4.70 percent to around 3.68 million units last year.

Earlier, Airlangga had invited employers’ associations to become active partners of the government in developing the small and medium industries sector. The minister has set a target to create 9,000 new entrepreneurs in 2021 to boost the economy in Indonesia, a move aimed as a strategic effort to promote employment and economic equality across the country.

If the synergy steps run smoothly, Indonesia is set to witness 20,000 new small industries and around 4,500 mid-scale industries coming up quickly, with 60 percent of these in Java and the rest outside Java.