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Indonesia's Trade Minister Reacts to Chinese E-commerce Temu

20 June 2024 08:22 WIB

TEMPO.CO, Jakarta - Indonesia's Trade Minister Zulkifli Hasan, also known Zulhas, claimed that he has just discovered the existence of a new e-commerce platform, Temu, from China, which has been in the public spotlight for its potential to disrupt the market and harm micro, small, and medium enterprises (MSMEs) in the country.

“I’ll study it first because I just found out about it,” he said when met at the Trade Ministry office in Central Jakarta on Wednesday, June 18, 2024.

Deputy Minister of Trade Jerry Sambuaga previously admitted that he was unaware of the application, but asserted that any e-commerce platform must comply with regulations.

“In principle, if it does not have a permit as commerce, it’s not allowed,” Jerry said at the Trade Ministry office in Jakarta on Thursday, June 13.

He mentioned TikTok Shop as an example, which was banned for lacking an operating permit and has now collaborated with Tokopedia. “If there is no [permit], it can't operate. It's simple.”

Musdhalifah Machmud, Daily Executive Deputy for Economic Coordination, Employment, and MSMEs at the Coordinating Ministry for Economic Affairs, emphasized the government's awareness of the potential disruption faced by MSME players from the emergence of the digital cross-border trade application, which cuts distribution channels and imported goods from China.

“Learning from the TikTok Shop case, not all digital business models or digital platforms are suitable for Indonesia's needs,” Musdhalifah said in Jakarta on Wednesday, June 12.

She acknowledged that without proper regulation, such applications could damage the market ecosystem, create unfair competition that could lead to a decline in demand for local products, and eliminate jobs in the distribution sector.

Therefore, the government is committed to protecting and empowering MSMEs through a series of strategic policies, including the issuance of Trade Minister’s Regulation No. 31 of 2023.

HAN REVANDA PUTRA

Editor’s Choice: Canada Wants to Ban Use of TikTok to Protect Its Citizens

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