Jakarta – Manufacturing sector exports grew 9.8 percent year-on-year (yoy) in the first five months of 2019 with a value of US$51.06 billion, or 74.59 percent of the country's total exports recorded at $68.46 billion from January to May.
"The manufacturing sector consistently accounts for the largest part of our exports," said Industry Minister Airlangga Hartarto in a press statement issued on Thursday.He added that the food and beverage industry had contributed $10.56 billion, making it the largest contributor, followed by the metal industry ($6.52 billion) and chemical industry ($5.38 billion).
"The food industry contributed 20.69 percent of the total exports of manufacturing sector products from January to May," he said, adding that the garment industry had contributed $3.55 billion, while the paper industry had contributed $3 billion.
"The government continues to encourage investment in and expansion of the manufacturing sector to boost its production capacity to meet [demand from] domestic and global markets."
The main export destinations for Indonesian products are the United States, China, Japan, Singapore and India.
Airlangga said the government also worked hard to attract more investors, particularly those who could manufacture import-substitute products to reduce the trade deficit, which was $1.02 billion in the first half of 2019.
The government also continued its reform agenda to improve the investment climate, simplifying licensing procedures, guaranteeing legal certainty and offering fiscal incentives, the minister said, adding that the government encourage industries to upgrade their operations with Industry 4.0 technology.
Amid the global economic slowdown, Airlangga still expressed optimism that the non-oil and gas industry could grow 5.4 percent this year. (bbn)