Raw material is a problem to batik crafters. Moreover, foreign batik competitors are flooding the local market. This becomes a boomerang to Indonesia batik crafters. Raw material becomes a vital problem to Indonesian batik crafters. Batik raw material is because many of the good quality raw materials, such as gondorukem, are exported. Batik entrepreneurs urged the government via the Industry Ministry to discuss raw material problem with Perum Perhutani. Discussion with Perhitani is considered important as a solution to problem of raw material scarcity in the domestic market.
Director General of Small and Medium Industries (SMI) of the Industry Ministry, Euis Saedah, in Jakarta (Monday, 7/16/2012) admitted that batik industry growth in Indonesia is currently disturbed by limited raw material supply. Consequently, many batik producers are forced to limit their production. While in fact, Euis said, since UNESCO established batik as Indonesia’s natural riches, batik produce are dominated by IKM whose number reaches 48,300 units absorbing up to 792,300 workers.
Euis reminded that increase of raw material prices started to threaten sustainability of growth of IKM. If batik production is not growing, the potential economic losses this year could reach IDR 340 billions with growth assumption of production value at 8% per year. She explained that at present, Indonesian batik commodity encounters problem due to increase of prices of raw materials, namely cotton, silk yarn, gondorukem, mori cloth, and cotton fabric. Stagnant growth in batik production could affect labor absorption and investment in IKM batik sector. “So far, gonodorukem or pine resin, which is one of the color enhancing materials in batik production, has been much exported. Many countries producing batik causes gondorukem supply to be increasingly difficult to be obtained”, Euis said.
Euis said that national gondorukem production is only at 80,000 tons per year and supplied by PT Inhutani I and III in Sumatera and Sulawesi, while local demand reaches 70,000 tons per year. But, there is a shortage of around 20,000 tons per year because many of the raw materials are exported. She said that batik has been going global and there are many countries producing batik, they are, amongst other, Malaysia, Turkey, China, and African and East European countries, and this has caused local producers to face difficulty in obtaining eaw material.
Euis said that her party will perform addition of gondorukem producing machines. In addition to that, the government expects Inhutani to reduce export and to prioritize local gondorukem demand. To increase gondorukem production, the government will buy a gondorukem producing machine worth IDR 300 millions. To cover gondorukem shortage, many of batik producers import gondorukem from China. Euis said that funding problem in IKM sector remains a problem. So far, the banking lacks interest in channeling credit to IKM so it causes more difficulty to business operators to maintain their businesses.
Business News - Wednesday, July 18, 2012