In the colonial era, the Dutch government had established trading companies in Indonesia. Among these companies is known as The Big Five with the aim of exporting spices to Europe.

Later, after Indonesian independence, the Indonesian government nationalized all trading companies into state-owned enterprises and called Niaga in the 1950s.

The nationalized companies are responsible for trading and distributing basic commodities such as staple foods (rice, flour, corn, etc.) in addition to traditional spices, and they are also responsible for trading and distributing agricultural commodities (fertilizers and pesticides, chemicals and others) and consumer products (textile, automotive, and others). To that end, the government grants the special right to operate within the terms of regulations, capital, and assets.

In June 2003, the Government of Indonesia has decided to incorporate the remaining three Niaga or trading companies namely PT. Tjipta Niaga (Persero), PT. Dharma Niaga (Persero) and PT. Pantja Niaga (Persero), became only one trading company, PT Perusahaan Perdagangan Indonesia (Persero) (PT PPI) or otherwise known as Indonesia Trading Company (ITC) which became effective from March 31, 2003 based on Government Regulation of the Republic of Indonesia no. 22 of 2003.

PT PPI then becomes a wholly owned trading company by the Indonesian government. Implementation of the ex-BUMN Niaga third merger is aimed at improving management efficiency, maximizing profits, business integration and increasing asset ownership.

Milestone PT PPI

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