To Protect Domestic Industry, Indonesia Strengthens Border Control and Enforces Import Regulations

Tanjung Priok Container Terminal Operations System

The Indonesian government has demonstrated its proactive stance in safeguarding the domestic industry from the intense pressures posed by a surge in imported products. To this end, a multifaceted strategy is being employed, and one of the pivotal steps in this approach is the relocation of import goods monitoring. This monitoring, previously conducted outside the customs area and known as “post-border,” is now being reestablished at the border itself.

This strategic shift has garnered appreciation from various quarters, including Trade Minister Zulkifli Hasan, who, in a recent press conference held on Thursday (26/10), expressed gratitude for the decision taken during the previous cabinet meeting.

He emphasized the importance of this decision by stating, “I would like to express my gratitude once again for the decision made in the previous cabinet meeting, where post-border has been reinstated as the border. Now, it’s up to Pak Menko (Coordinating Minister for Economic Affairs, Airlangga Hartarto) to modify the regulations of eight ministries and institutions.”

During the same press conference, Zulhas presided over an impactful event, the destruction of illegally imported goods. These goods had a significant estimated value of almost Rp50 billion, with precise figures indicating Rp49.951 billion. The destruction took place within the confines of the Customs and Excise Storage Place Complex (TPP) located in Simpangan, Cikarang Utara, Bekasi, West Java.

The gamut of imported goods subjected to this destruction encompassed a broad spectrum, ranging from banned secondhand clothing to various commodities such as iron, electronics, medical equipment, food and beverages, unlicensed measuring instruments, and electronic children’s toys. These toys, in particular, were devoid of user manuals, Indonesian language warranty cards, and did not adhere to the Indonesian National Standard (SNI).

These collective actions by the government are not isolated; they are a sequence of responses to President Joko Widodo’s directives to tighten the ingress of imported goods. These measures serve as a robust and committed endeavor to shield the domestic industry and the small and medium-sized enterprises (UMKM) from the looming threat posed by illegal imports.

Furthermore, the event signifies the government’s keen vigilance and ongoing commitment to protect the domestic industry and the interests of UMKM. It’s crucial to recognize that this event is a tangible manifestation of the government’s dedicated stance in upholding and enforcing regulations, which have been recalibrated to ensure that imports adhere to prescribed standards, regulations, and documentation.

In addition, a collaborative effort spearheaded by Zulhas, in conjunction with Airlangga, Finance Minister Sri Mulyani, and the National Police, has been put into motion. This effort is aimed at enhancing import regulations, particularly within the sphere of e-commerce. Moreover, there is an expedited process of revising the regulations governing import prohibitions and restrictions, as well as streamlining the management of domestically circulated goods.

The resounding message is clear: the government is resolute in its commitment to protect the domestic industry and the interests of UMKM from the perils of illicit imports. These actions collectively underscore the successful coordination of stringent import policies and the tangible dedication to safeguarding the nation’s economic landscape.