Alibaba, the Chinese e-commerce giant, has announced the launch of an Indonesian Pavilion on Tmall Global, its cross-border platform designed to help international brands reach more than a billion Chinese consumers.

It means that Indonesia joins Malaysia, Thailand, Japan, New Zealand, the US and other countries in having a dedicated platform to showcase their national brands at the same time as promoting cultural and tourism opportunities.

Announcing the development in a statement at the end of last week, Alibaba revealed that it had hosted a special launch ceremony in Shanghai, which was attended by Indonesian ambassador Djauhari Oratmangun and other dignitaries.

Top level support for the initiative also came from Indonesian president Joko Widodo, who said in a video message: “Indonesia not only is renowned for its rich resources and beautiful natural environment, we are also a country known for producing some very high-quality products … I wholeheartedly present these finest products that Indonesia have on offer to all of you.”

Echoing his president, Ambassador Oratmangun said the pavilion launch was a “major step” forward in leveraging Alibaba’s e-commerce platforms to bring Indonesian products to the Chinese market.

“We hope this initiative will further entice Chinese consumers to enjoy the flavours of Indonesia through its finest products and attract more [of] Indonesia’s best brands to take advantage of this not-to-be-missed opportunity,” he said.

Initially, Tmall Global will host five leading Indonesian food and beverages brands, including Indomie instant noodles, Kapal Ali coffee, Richeese biscuits, Papatonk shrimp crackers and the Yan Ty Ty bird’s nest brand.

But Ryan Wang, Tmall’s general manager of public affairs, made clear that the platform would welcome the participation of other Indonesian brands, especially as Alibaba’s 11.11 global shopping festival will kick off within just a week.

“We hope this will encourage other Indonesian businesses to learn more about this great opportunity and perhaps even to participate in the next 11.11 global shopping festival,” he said.

Indonesia is a key market for Alibaba, whose cloud computing division, Alibaba Cloud, launched a data centre in the country in March.

The company is also involved in a number of initiatives to support SMEs and young people, and only last month Alibaba co-founder Jack Ma revealed that he wanted to establish a Jack Ma institute to train Indonesians in e-commerce and the internet.

Sourced from Alibaba, PR Newswire, Straits Times; additional content by WARC staff