Nur Yasmin, Jakarta – The Indonesian Embassy in Moscow will hold the fourth Indonesian Festival in Russia on Aug. 2-4 at the Krasnaya Presnya Park, the Foreign Affairs Ministry announced on Thursday.
"The festival will be attended by ministry and regional government officials, business people, including small and medium enterprises, art performers, journalists and others," the Indonesian Ambassador to Russia and Belarus, M. Wahid Supriyadi, said at a press conference in Jakarta on Thursday.
The Indonesian Festival, themed "Visit Wonderful Indonesia: Enjoy Our Tropical Paradise," is expected to attract 140,000 visitors. Last year's festival attracted 135,000.
"There will be exhibitions of various iconic Indonesian products, including coffee, clothing, accessories, food, handicrafts and so on. We will also feature art and cultural performances from different regions in Indonesia, including songs and dances," Ambassador Wahid said.
There will also be a batik workshop, an Indonesian language class, fashion shows featuring Indonesian designers, cooking classes and a barista exhibition.
Before the festival, the embassy will also host the Indonesia-Russia Business Forum and a business "match-making" session on Aug. 1 which will be attended by business people from both countries.
Last year's festival recorded $2.3 million worth of new business collaborations. This year the organizers are targeting at least $3 million.
"We will have representatives from West Java, Central Java, Yogyakarta, East Java, Aceh, Riau Islands and West Papua," he said.
The tourism minister, the home affairs minister and Russian officials including the deputy minister of industry and trade are expected to attend the festival.
Deputy director for marketing development at the Tourism Ministry, Nia Niscaya, said her ministry will give full marketing support for the festival.
"We want to raise awareness about Indonesia and promote the 'Wonderful Indonesia' brand in Russia. Last year, a total of 125,000 Russian tourists came to Indonesia. On average they spend more than $1500 per visit – more than the average tourist spending of $1200 per visit," she said.
"We've also organized a series of activities to celebrate the 70th year of diplomatic relations between Indonesia and Russia, among them by publishing a book of untold stories of this close relationship. For example, [we just found out] that [first] President Sukarno's Russian interpreter is still alive and lives in Moscow," Wahid said.
Indonesia-Russia diplomatic relations began in 1950 when the latter was still part of the Soviet Union.