Seafood industry anxiously awaits review of Indonesia’s escrow rule

Blue swimming crab in a bucket.

A rule requiring escrow 30 percent escrow deposits on Indonesian export shipments valued above USD 250,000 (EUR 230,000) is under government review.

The outcome of that review will be pivotal to the future of the country’s seafood industry, according to National Fisheries Institute Chief Strategy Officer Gavin Gibbons.

“This policy is more than just an inconvenience and it has already caused some companies to reconsider their Indonesian sourcing,” Gibbons told SeafoodSource. “During this review period, we encourage the Indonesian government to reconsider the policy.”

The rule, which officially took effect 1 August, requires exporters of high-value cargo to make a deposite equivalent to 30 percent of the value of their shipments into a special bank account controlled by the Indonesian government for a minimum of three months. The government’s justification for the regulation is to combat the increasingly common practice undertaken by Indonesian exporters of retaining their foreign exchange earnings overseas in order to capitalize on more favorable interest rates and to support their international operations.

Gibbons said NFI has been informed the policy is now in the midst …

Photo courtesy of Iammotos/Shutterstock

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