Shoe exports from Indonesia are expected to plunge by up to 20 per cent next year in the wake of the global economic slowdown, industry leaders announced on Wednesday.

The Indonesian Footwear Association (Aprisindo) predicted that exports would decline by 10-20 per cent from US$1.7 billion in 2000, as orders for footwear decreased on the back of a global economic slowdown.

Aprisindo chairman, Anton J Supit, said that footwear manufacturers had yet to receive orders for next year's shipments and many feared that the slump would cause some companies to cut their production.

"We usually receive orders three months in advance, so our exports until the end of the year are more or less secure," he said. "What we are concerned about is next year's orders, which are generated this year, and we are still waiting orders for January and February."

He added said that Indonesia exported 40 per cent of its footwear to the US and that as demand had slumped since the terrorist attacks, the impact had been huge, but that the industry was trying its hardest to prevent laying off thousands of workers.