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BATIK - Colours of the Island

24 June 2019

The Indonesian Pavilion at the Apparel, Textile and Footwear Exhibition (ATF) 2019, in Cape Town, South Africa was a showcase of the rich colours, patterns and textures of the archipelago.

"Batik has long been recognized by the people of South Africa. We admit that our presence here is still limited, but we do believe that our high-quality fabric and batik products have  great potential to be marketed further. A good synergy between the Indonesian Embassy in Pretoria, the Indonesian Consulate General in Cape Town and ITPC Johannesburg should continue to popularize batik in Africa”, said the Indonesian Consul General in Cape Town, Krishna Adi Poetranto, at the opening of ATF.

Batik captivated the attention of visitors to the ATF exhibition. The sequence “Wastra Nusantara” at the fashion show was enlivened by the latest collection of batik designers and entrepreneurs who came from Lampung, Pekalongan, Bandung and Cape Town.

Batik Siger presented a collection of clothing for men and women with a typical Siger style of Lampung Province. The uniqueness of the Batik Siger business model, especially its empowerment of housewives and persons with disabilities in their business processes, was the reason for the Government of the Republic of Indonesia to award “Upakarti” to this company in 2014.

Madame Umi Mahmudah Al Farisi hosted Batik Siger designer Ms Laila Al Khusna at her official residence in Pretoria, South Africa. Her colourful designer wear was showcased through a private fashion show and invited guests had the opportunity to purchase the products of this talented designer.

At the ATF Lovely Zia Bandung displayed contemporary batik clothing for men and women such as patch work skirts, shirts and dresses. Aruni Batik Pekalongan displayed batik clothing for men and batik fabric, while Annie.B Cape Town featured Balinese fabrics, silver jewelry, accessories and rattan bags.

“The love of President Nelson Mandela for Indonesian batik is not a new story,” says Ambassador Salman Al-Farisi of the Republic of Indonesia in Pretoria. “Many of Mandela’s portraits are with him wearing Batik. Unfortunately, majority South African people who refer to batik as ‘Madiba Shirt’ often do not know that the origin of batik is from their Indian Ocean-friend, Indonesia.”

Batik, which has officially become a UNESCO world heritage since 2009, is expected to be global and become a driver for exports of small and medium industries. Through the exhibition, the Government has introduced Indonesian textile businessmen to their South African counterparts to open up further business opportunities.

According to the Ministry of Industry of Indonesia the export value of woven and batik commodities has reached USD 53.3 million in 2018, with the main destinations being Japan, the Netherlands and the United States. The government fully supports the textile industry sector because of its labor intensive nature and the dominance of domestic use of raw materials.

Indonesian Embassy in Pretoria and TDS



February/March 2020










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