Technology Transfer and Diffusion among Manufacturing Small and Medium Enterprises in Indonesia


  • Tulus Tahi Hamonangan Tambunan



It is evident everywhere that in manufacturing industry, levels of productivity are higher in large enterprises (LEs), including foreign-owned firms or multinational companies (MNCs), than in small and medium enterprises (SMEs), partly because the former enterprises enjoy higher levels of technological capacity. Thus, for SMES, increased productivity might be facilitated through a scaling-up of knowledge or technology. The case study of the Tegal metalworking industry in Central Java presented in this article shows that the most important channels for the diffusion of knowledge/technology among domestic manufacturing SMEs include subcontracting arrangements with foreign direct investment (FDI). However, the importance of FDI as a source of technology/knowledge varies across the differing types of domestic firms. This study also shows that government agencies are currently the largest providers of training and similar assistance for manufacturing SMEs in the country. Such programmes, however, are rendered less effective by a low level of coverage, a lack of effective evaluation and assessment, and a supply rather than a demand orientation.