Indonesia’s IT Minister wants Netflix to lower subscription prices to combat illegal streamers

Photo: freestocks.org via Unsplash
Photo: freestocks.org via Unsplash

Indonesia’s Communications and Information Minister Johnny G Plate has made yet another statement about Netflix, this time suggesting that the streaming giant and other streaming platforms should consider lowering their subscription prices to be more affordable for the Indonesian market. 

According to Johnny, streaming platforms should find a relatively efficient business model to make their prices more competitive, tapping into a larger audience in Indonesia to help with the government’s effort to move them away from illegal streaming websites.

“What we’d like to push is the legal [streaming] business and not pirated [streaming platforms], and then competitive prices,” Johnny said yesterday, as quoted by Suara.

Earlier this week, Johnny said Netflix should hold off on airing its original series or films produced by other countries to make way for Indonesian creatives.

This time around, Johnny went as far as to suggest that streaming platforms should provide their services for free in Indonesia. 

“If they can be free, it would be better. For example, their income from other businesses can be used to pay for the broadcasting legal contract. That’s an example, ya,” he said, as quoted by Viva News.

Johnny also urged the public to consider how watching films illegally can negatively impact filmmakers.

His latest statements on Netflix seem to be in line with the ministry’s recent move to block illegal movie streaming websites in the country, which Johnny said was done so Indonesia shrugs off its reputation of being an enabler of content piracy.

Netflix subscription prices (IDR49K-IDR169K or US$3.53-US$12.19 per month) may be on the relatively steep side in Indonesia, at least compared to local streaming platforms. But, at the absence of official data from Netflix, it seems that demand for it is huge nonetheless if we consider that millions have recently demanded that their mobile service provider lift their ban on the streaming platform.


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