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Indonesia – Unity in Diversity – By Larry Kulchawik

The International Trade Association recently conducted a trade seminar that focused on doing business in Indonesia. The event was held at the Indonesian Trade Center – Chicago, a part of a global trade network supervised by the Ministry of Trade of the Republic of Indonesia. Before kicking off the formal presentation, the event opened with Indonesian dance and music to set the mood, and cultural differences.

Indonesia, officially the Republic of Indonesia, is a unitary sovereign state. Situated between the Indian and Pacific oceans, it is the world’s largest island country, with more than seventeen thousand islands. Indonesia is the world’s 14th-largest country in terms of land area and world’s 7th-largest country in terms of combined sea and land area. Its capital and country’s most populous city is Jakarta, which is also the most populous city in Southeast Asia. Indonesia’s national motto, “Bhinneka Tunggal Ika” (“Unity in Diversity” literally, “many, yet one”), articulates the diversity that shapes the country. One of its greatest challenges are related to its infrastructure connectivity with its many islands.

In June 2017, UNCTAD announced that Indonesia was ranked fourth, behind the United States, China and India, as a most attractive investment destination for 2017-2019, jumping from the 8th position last year. Indonesia is ranked high for its ease of doing business.

Trade shows and social media are excellent ways to test an international market. A trade show event called Trade Expo Indonesia at the Indonesia Convention Exhibition, a new 220,000 sqm venue Located in the heart of BSD City, Greater Jakarta, Indonesia-will be held October 11-15, 2017. For many US companies this event can be a great opportunity to open trade possibilities to expand their sales growth through all of Asia.

It is interesting to note that Indonesia and India are growing to be two of the fastest growing users of internet and social media marketing. 50% of the 262 million people in Indonesia are under 30 years old with strong consumer confidence. The combination of social marketing strategies with trade show marketing are great ways to jump start initiatives to expand trade and sales outside of your country of origin.

 The Indonesia Rising event in Chicago was concluded with an authentic Indonesian lunch. The official national dish of Indonesia is tumpeng, chosen in 2014 as the dish that binds the diversity of Indonesia’s various culinary traditions. Another popular Indonesian dish is rendang. In 2011, rendang was chosen as the “World’s Most Delicious Food” by CNN. As Paul Harvey would say, “And now you know the rest of the story!” International trade opportunities continue to grow and our community of exhibit supplier companies need to stay one step ahead as trusted advisors for the customers we serve.

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Posted in Columns, From the Power People
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