Sunday, December 10, 2023

Books, music, films, and software added to Indonesia’s digital products positive list for cross-border e-commerce

Reading Time: 2 minutes
Journalist IBP


Mahinda Arkyasa



Ministry of Trade, led by Minister Zulkifli Hasan, announces four types of digital products—digital books, films, music, and software—added to the positive list under Regulation No. 31 of 2023. This allows their direct import via e-commerce, even if the value is below US$ 100 per unit.

Zulkifli Hasan (Zulhas), the Chairman of the National Mandate Party (PAN), believes that the issuance of this positive list will empower the domestic creative industry. He sees an opportunity for local players in the creative industry to thrive by utilizing the local market.

“We have talented young people, whether they are designers, participants in the creative industry, or SME players. It’s just a matter of building the ecosystem, with government support to nurture our young talents,” stated Zulhas on November 9, 2023.

Under Regulation No. 31 of 2023, e-commerce platforms are prohibited from facilitating direct transactions from foreign sellers to domestic buyers (cross-border) for goods valued at less than $100 per unit. However, certain goods are still permitted for cross-border sales. The listed positive products are not domestically produced.

Zulhas previously mentioned that the positive list would be regulated through Minister of Trade Regulations. However, he did not provide further details on the schedule for the issuance of these regulations.

He did not elaborate on the considerations for selecting the four types of products on the positive list. However, he emphasized that the inclusion of digital books, music, and films would not disrupt the domestic creative industry.

“Digital books are needed for reading, it’s okay. Music and films are also okay to be on the positive list,” he remarked.

Isy Karim, Director General of Domestic Trade stated that a total of 23 tariff lines are included in the positive list under Regulation No. 31 of 2023. Among them, nine tariff lines are related to digital books, five to films and software, and four to music.

These 23 tariff lines allow these products to be directly imported from abroad into Indonesia through local markets, with prices below US$ 100 per unit. Isy explained that these tariff lines were chosen because there is currently no local substitute for these imported products.

“These items may not have substitutes. For example, films produced abroad or books to educate the public,” said Isy.

Journalist IBP


Mahinda Arkyasa




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