Retail Competition

Nov 9th, 2006, in Business & Economy, by

Retailers are complaining about too much competition.

The chairman of the Asosiasi Pemasok Garmen dan Aksesori Indonesia, an association of clothing suppliers, (APGAI), Suryadi Sasmita, said at a seminar in Jakarta on the 8th kompas that the level of competitiveness in the retail sector was becoming worrying due to price and discount wars being waged by larger retailers. It had gotten so bad, said Suryadi, that consumers were often unwilling to buy anything unless there was a discount offered.

Retailers were being forced, he said, to keep their prices low while their operating costs continued to rise. While on the other hand he complained about manipulative and dishonest practises of some retailers, who raised their prices and then offered a discount. He said this led to a loss of trust among shoppers, and:

It leads to those with money going to Singapore to shop.

Meanwhile Lynda Wee of Singapore said that her impression of the Indonesian retail market was that suppliers, retailers, mall owners, and the government had a tendency to blame each other rather than work together.

She advised that the government employ protectionist measures, such as tariffs on imports of foreign goods, to allow small local businesses to grow and develop. She also said that Indonesia lacked a national brand or identifying term. Singapore had “Uniquely Singapore”, Malaysia, “Malaysia, Truly Asia”, Thailand, “Amazing Thailand”, but Indonesia had nothing similar.

Lynda said that the development of the retail sector should go hand in hand with that of tourism.

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