The Ministry of Trade, through the Directorate General of National Export Development (Ditjen PEN), is intensifying efforts to bolster the export of food products globally. This initiative aims to ensure the safety of products offered by Micro, Small, and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) through various programs and initiatives. Deputy Minister of Trade Jerry Sambuaga emphasized this during an event themed "Urgency of Fulfilling Food Safety Regulation for Export Food Products" in South Minahasa Regency, North Sulawesi, on Saturday (10/2/2024). The event, attended by 200 participants, targeted MSME actors and the local community. "The Ministry of Trade fully supports endeavors to export food products globally. A comprehensive strategy is vital to ramp up exports in 2024," stated Jerry through a press release on Saturday (10/2/2024). He stressed the necessity of product diversification, enhancing product quality and safety, and expanding export markets to non-traditional countries.
The Ministry has initiated a mentoring program and Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Point (HACCP) certification for export-oriented MSMEs in the food sector since 2020. In 2024, 12 export-oriented food sector MSMEs will receive mentoring and HACCP certification to improve product quality and safety. Jerry highlighted the importance of maintaining product quality, safety, and sustainability to compete globally. Utilizing non-traditional market opportunities to expand product marketing reach is crucial for successful export growth. Based on data from the Central Statistics Agency (BPS), Indonesia recorded a trade surplus of USD 36.93 billion in 2023. Exports totaled USD 258.82 billion during January-December 2023, with imports amounting to USD 221.89 billion. The Ministry encourages MSMEs to adopt export-ready packaging for enhanced competitiveness. Jerry emphasized that using such packaging is key to expanding export opportunities to countries with accessible markets. Furthermore, Indonesia's non-oil and gas exports reached USD 242.9 billion in 2023, with a positive trade balance of USD 36.93 billion. The country has successfully implemented 37 trade agreements, with 15 in negotiation and 16 in exploration stages, offering business players opportunities to develop products in international markets and create new export avenues.