Full text: The electrical equipment market of the Netherland East Indies

For the American electrical manufacturer who is prepared to spend 
promotional money, opportunity is waiting in the Netherland East 
Indies. Within the memory of many now living these islands have 
been reputed a lingering stronghold of savagery, but that is not 
their status to-day. Rubber, coffee, and sugar, the principal prod- 
ucts, have been made the bases for high industrialization. © Wealth 
is being produced, almost wholly upon staples. - Furthermore, the 
industries are of such recent origin that they are thoroughly modern 
in equipment and management, 
American exporters can not be said to have overlooked this region, 
but it is true that they have not prized it to its full deserts. There 
has not been failure in trying for the market, but in lack of study of 
its requirements. This report advances two necessary rules for 
selling electrical equipment in the islands. They are more than 
rules, they are inflexible laws: (1) A factory representative on the 
spot working with agencies and with facilities for repair service, is 
the absolute minimum for successful selling; (2) the climate is humid 
and hot (the Equator bisects the group) and all metals, insulation, 
and protective coverings of every electrical item must be capable of 
standing up under extreme conditions. 
The electrical imports of the islands during 1926 amounted to 
$4,781,000, in 1927 $6,570,000, and in 1928 (the last year for which 
figures are available) $8,157,000. The Netherlands supplied ap- 
proximately half and Germany about 40 per cent. The United 
States supplied, respectively, $300,504, $389,834, and $560,342; or 
6.4, 5.9, and 6.8 per cent. American export figures show for these 
years and for 1929, respectively, $607,841, $599,995, $790,923, and 
$1,448,802. The discrepancy between the American and Nether- 
land figures is principally accounted for by difference in classification 
of commodities. 
American manufacturers who are equipped to enter this market 
will find suitable products in demand. There appears to be no 
preferences or prejudices except as to Dutch goods. Although en- 
gineers are preponderantly German trained, this has no exceptional 
effect on the market. 
The Bureau of Foreign and Domestic Commerce maintains an 
office in Batavia, Java, and district and cooperative offices throughout 
the United States for the benefit of American exporters of electrical 
goods. Inquiries may be addressed to the nearest district office or 
to the Klectrical Equipment Division of the Bureau of Foreign and 
Domestic Commerce, Washington, D. C., where they will receive 
prompt attention. 
WiLriam L. Coorrr, Director, 
Bureaqu~of Foreign and Domestic Commerce. 
QcrosER, 1930. 
Md pe

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