Indonesia is currently designing a grand strategy so that it can more quickly be recognised as a developed country and not get stuck as a middle-income country or middle-income trap, according to the website of The President of The Republic of Indonesia. The grand strategy is to create an ecosystem for electric cars and electric vehicle (EV) batteries so that other countries are more dependent on Indonesia for finished products rather than just raw materials.
This was conveyed by President Joko Widodo while attending the Commemoration of the 8th Anniversary of the Indonesian Solidarity Party (PSI) which was held at the Djakarta Theater, Jakarta, Tuesday evening, 31 January 2023.
The President said that he wanted to unite and integrate Indonesia’s natural wealth into an item like EV batteries and lithium batteries, which use components such as nickel, copper, tin and bauxite. And by integrating them into EV batteries Indonesia would be able to take the next step in the ecosystem to produce electric vehicles, which all countries will be looking to have.
President Jokowi realizes that integrating battery and electric car components is not easy even though Indonesia has almost all the materials needed to do so. From a geographical perspective, the challenge is how to unite various mining materials which are located in various parts of Indonesia.
“What is difficult is the geography of our country. There is a lot of nickel in Sulawesi and in North Maluku. Copper is in Papua and Sumbawa, these are the big ones. The bauxite is in West Kalimantan and in the Riau Archipelago, in Bintan, Bangka Belitung is Tin. How to integrate this? There is a smelter here, there is a smelter there, put together into an item called EV battery and an electric car,” he continued.
The next challenge is from the external side, for example the European Union’s lawsuit against Indonesia because the government stopped exporting nickel in the form of raw materials. Even though Indonesia lost the lawsuit at the World Trade Organization (WTO), President Jokowi emphasized that the government would not back down and would consistently stop exports of other mining goods in the form of raw materials.
“If we are sued then we will step down, don’t expect this country to become a developed country, don’t expect it,” he said.
Present at the event included Deputy Minister of Agrarian Affairs and Spatial Planning Raja Juli Antoni, Deputy Chairman of the PSI Board of Trustees, Grace Natalie, and General Chairperson of PSI, Giring Ganesha.
Source: The President of The Republic of Indonesia website, BPMI Setpres