Indonesian President Joko Widodo, in comments to Bloomberg News on Thursday, urged electric vehicle (EV) maker Tesla to manufacture batteries as well as its own cars in the country. Jokowi, as the president is popularly known, said in an interview that Indonesia wants a “huge ecosystem of electric cars” instead of drawing on its natural resources to make batteries. He also said that Indonesia is considering taxing nickel exports this year to increase revenue. Officials have previously said it could come in the third quarter.
The president and senior government officials held meetings with Tesla founder Elon Musk earlier this year, during which he said he called for the Southeast Asian country to be considered a car manufacturing hub on top of battery-making.
Tesla representatives did not immediately respond to a request for comment. Indonesia’s investment ministry did not respond to questions about progress on a potential deal with Tesla.
Luhut Pandjaitan, a senior Indonesian minister overseeing negotiations with Tesla, told the media earlier this month that the US firm had committed about $5 billion (about $5 billion) to buy nickel products from nickel processing companies based out of Morowali, Indonesia, in the island of Sulawesi. 39,900 crores). .. The nickel material will be used in Tesla’s lithium battery.
Luhut said his ministry was still in talks with Tesla, but Musk was “busy with domestic matters, with regards to Twitter.”
Social media company Twitter and Musk are currently suing each other over Musk’s attempt to walk away from his deal to acquire Twitter for $44 billion (about Rs 3,50,900 crore).
During their meeting in May, Jokowi invited Musk to visit Indonesia in November, when the country will host the leaders’ summit for the Group of 20 major economies.
Companies that have invested in EV manufacturing in Indonesia or announced their planned investments include Japanese firms Toyota Motor Corp and Mitsubishi Motors Corp and South Korea’s Hyundai Motor Group.
SGMW Motor Indonesia is part of a joint venture between SAIC Motor Corp Ltd, General Motors Co and Wuling Motors, which has an EV assembly factory in the resource-rich country.
© Thomson Reuters 2022