Wed, 06 May 2009
Jakarta (ANTARA News) - The government`s effort to encourage the people to use domestic products does amount to protectionism, Vice President Jusuf Kalla said here on Tuesday.

"Rather it is something that has to do with improving the competitive power of Indonesian products," the vice president said in his keynote address at an Executive Leadership Seminar on Domestic Products Awakening.

Commenting on free trade, the vice president said Indonesia followed World Trade Organization (WTO) but the free trade should be followed by fair trade.

"Globalization is the characteristic of free trade but we need a free trade which is fair in its manner," the vice president said.

He pointed out that sport shoes producers in Indonesia were forced to produce low price shoes but when the similar products were sold in the United States, the consumers there were required to buy at higher price.

"That is what we call unfair trade," Kalla said.

Meanwhile, Industry Minister Fahmi Idris said the use of domestic product in Indonesia has been existing since the government of President Soekarno until President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono.

Fahmi Idris said the objective of using the domestic product is to awake the real sector in the country.

"But it will remain unfair if the domestic producers produce things with bad quality but sell them at higher price. The quality of the products should be good with competitive price," the minister said.

He also advised the domestic consumers to be careful in choosing the domestic products because sometimes they have better quality. (*)



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