TEMPO.CO, Yogyakarta - The Royal Silk Indonesia Foundation revealed that Indonesia's dependence on silk materials from China has a major impact on batik craftsmen and other markets that rely on silk as its main production material.
Currently, 98 percent of the raw silk materials used by Indonesian craftsmen are originated from China.
"Within the past two to three years, Chinese imported silk cords were sold for IDR 1.3 million per kilogram, which is a significant increase compared to a decade ago when it was valued at IDR 250,000 per kilogram," said Fitriani, the Royal Silk Indonesia Foundation Chairman in Yogyakarta on Monday, April 16, 2018.
Fitriani made her statement in reference to a research conducted by Kuroda Masato, a researcher from the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) who focuses on local product promotions. Kuroda discovered that the price hike has affected Indonesian craftsmen that use silk as their base material.
For example, in Wajo, South Sulawesi, a region considered to be one of the central regions for woven fabric production, only 2,000 out of 5,000 businesses are capable of producing silk as a direct cause of the increasing silk prices and scarce product.
Based on the research in Wajo, Kuroda found an alternative material to silk that has relatively equal quality but at lower prices. In his search, Kuroda discovered Cupro (Cuprammonium rayon) that is sold for IDR 58,000 to IDR 62,000 per kilogram, which is imported from Japan.
PRIBADI WICAKSONO (CONTRIBUTOR)