Published: 17:39, June 11, 2024
China Homelife events show growing Indonesian links
By Leonardus Jegho in Jakarta
Asep Setiandi (right) and other visitors inspect a display booth of food processing equipment in China Homelife Indonesia, the largest trade fair for Chinese manufacturers in the Southeast Asian country.  (PHOTO / LEONARDUS JEGHO FOR CHINA DAILY)

Chinese firms are pushing for stronger business ties with Indonesia, as seen at the recent four-day trade fair held at Jakarta International Expo (JIExpo).

China Homelife Indonesia — the largest trade fair for Chinese manufacturers in the Southeast Asian country— opened on June 4.

Meorient has delivered more than 50 China Homelife trade fairs globally — including Türkiye, Poland, Mexico, and Brazil — but Indonesia is the only country that has welcomed up to three annual editions of the expo

Xia Guoming, executive vice-president of China’s Educational Equipment Industry Association, said at the opening of the expo that the trade fair would support the transfer of China’s knowhow to local people.

READ MORE: Indonesia eyes Chinese market for inbound tourists

As well as educational equipment, the expo saw Chinese suppliers from industries including textiles and garments, building materials, household products, packaging equipment, industrial machinery, and auto parts.

The exhibition — the latest of six expos organized by Meorient Exhibition International at JIExpo since 2022 — saw 871 suppliers over 1,200 display booths and more than 40,000 visitors from Indonesia and around Southeast Asian. Visitor numbers were up 30 percent from last year, organizers said.

Meorient has delivered more than 50 China Homelife trade fairs globally — including Türkiye, Poland, Mexico, and Brazil — but Indonesia is the only country that has welcomed up to three annual editions of the expo.  

“We are following the political will (of China and Indonesia) in the sense that it provides us with a direction,” Meorient COO Binu Pillai told this correspondent.

He noted the remarks made by former Chinese Ambassador to Indonesia Lu Kang that China and Indonesia shared a common destiny.  

“So, this is the reason behind the growth not only in the number of exhibitors but also in the number of visitors,” Pillai said, noting that 35 percent of the Chinese firms in attendance had exhibited previously.

Pillai said that they aim to make Indonesia a hub for promoting Chinese and Indonesian products in Southeast Asia.    

Larissa Zhou, general manager of Meorient, said the growth of the manufacturing sector will be key for Indonesia in the coming years, which was why this expo had a focus on industrial machinery.

“So we bring in the latest products, like the technology for the manufacturing sector,” Zhou said.

Zhou said she was delighted to see display booths opened by local factories to showcase their technology and products while comparing what they had with those from China.

“We can share with locals how to build a factory, how to improve their productivity, and how to maintain efficiency,” she said.

Zhou said that many Chinese and Indonesian businesspeople had held talks during the expo week, looking into possibilities for cooperation.

Visitors at a booth in JIEXPO in Jakarta recently. (PHOTO / LEONARDUS JEGHO FOR CHINA DAILY)

  

Meorient will hold similar expos at JIExpo in November and next year.  

Eko Subiyakto, a sailor at an international shipping company, said he came to the expo to find Chinese equipment that could help support his wife’s laundry business in Jakarta.

He said China had many people who could “create unpredictable technologies and products” including those for the industrial machinery and car making sectors.  

Subiyakto said he lauds China for its special efforts to educate young citizens and employ them to build their country.

He also noticed dramatic changes in Hainan province between his first visit there in 1990 and 2007, when he also visited Ningbo in Zhejiang province.  

“I was stunned in disbelief to see the rapid development of the two places,” Subiyakto said.    

Asep Setiandi, who runs a business that produces packaging items from his home in the West Java provincial capital of Bandung, said he had found packaging equipment at the expo and might purchase them via local agents when his finances allowed it.

He came to a previous China Homelife Expo and bought noodle processing equipment that is now operated by his three workers.

Visitors queued at the Sweetly Bee booth, which showcased various kinds of drinks such as coffee, juice, and chocolate. After trying the products, some attendees asked booth staff how to open new outlets for themselves  

“I am glad to come to this expo,” Setiandi said, noting the variety of products on display.

Visitors queued at the Sweetly Bee booth, which showcased various kinds of drinks such as coffee, juice, and chocolate. After trying the products, some attendees asked booth staff how to open new outlets for themselves.        

Riziq Fauzan, the staff coordinator at the Sweetly Bee booth, said that certain drinks on display were produced with China-made powders and that those products could now be found in about 300 outlets in most provinces across Indonesia.  

Fauzan commended the Chinese and Indonesian governments for cooperating to send more and more young Indonesians to study in China.  

“China shares knowledge and skills with us. It enables us to become smarter and, hopefully, it will enable us to open job opportunities for ourselves and for others,” Fauzan said.

READ MORE: China's electric cars find favor with Indonesians

Liu Wen, from Foshan Tench Electromechanical Equipment Co Ltd in China’s Guangdong province, said that introducing products to the public was crucial.

She said that Indonesia is a big, developing country where the firm expect to market more of their products.

“We hope that next year there will be more buyers of our products from Indonesia,” Liu said, adding that the firm may return to China Homelife in the future.

 

Leonardus Jegho is a freelance journalist for China Daily.

 

QUESTIONS

•    Should it be six fairs at JIExpo since 2022 not 2002?

•    Is it Sweetly Bee or Weetly Bee? https://kompasindo.co.id/2024/06/pt-hakata-asia-indonesia-kenalkan-produk-terbaru-di-the-international-home-life-exhibition-2024/#google_vignette