The “Trade Successfully with Indonesia: 10 Important Principles,” produced by credit insurer Atradius, says: “Indonesia holds immense opportunities for foreign exporters, especially those whose traditional markets are stagnant as economic problems continue to embattle many countries.”
It adds: “It is one of the world’s fastest developing economies, whose growing middle classes have a taste for foreign goods and services. Add to that its government’s extensive investment in much-needed infrastructure projects and the prospects for foreign businesses become even more apparent.”
The paper exhorts foreign exporters and suppliers to take the time to understand every aspect of the Indonesian marketplace. Some of its tips:
- It is essential to get a local representative that understands your business and to engage a distributor with a proven track record.
- Factor into your pricing strategy the cost of distributing to a country as vast as Indonesia and the fact that average incomes are still lower than in more mature markets.
- When promoting products, be aware of the country’s strong religious and traditional values that may find some forms of advertising unacceptable.
- To avoid intellectual property theft, register patents, trademarks, and designs “at the earliest opportunity in Indonesia as registration in another country will not protect their rights.”
- Foreign exporters must also ensure compliance with Indonesia’s often complex import regulations and take account of import tariffs that may vary considerably by product.
- A fluent Bahasa Indonesia speaker on the team can help foreign suppliers to interpret correctly the nuances of the Indonesian language and business culture.
- The Indonesian legal system is based on the principle of Pancasila, or valuing consensus above confrontation. If a payment dispute arises, seek agreement through mediation or arbitration before resorting to court proceedings.
The full report can be downloaded here.