Government Plans to Ban Bauxite Exports


The government had previously lifted the ban on coal exports. This time, the President of Indonesia, Joko Widodo, opened another discussion regarding the ban on the another commodity, namely bauxite. According to Jokowi, national exports must be more value-added.

Jokowi emphasized that Indonesia is one of the countries with the world’s largest nickel reserves. Jokowi wants, “Indonesia to become a big player in the nickel sector,” he said in the Implementation of the Second Phase of the Integrated Electric Battery Industry, Wednesday (8/6/2022),

“This has been our desire for a long time, that’s why we stop nickel there,” said Jokowi.

The government itself has banned the export of nickel ore since January 1, 2020. The reason for the government to stop nickel exports cannot be separated from efforts to develop downstream and industrialization of raw materials that have been sourced from natural resources.

Jokowi emphasized that nickel is not the only raw material that will be stopped from being sent abroad. Bauxite will also be stopped later. However, Jokowi did not reveal when the commodities would be stopped from being sent abroad.

“Later on, we will continue to stop the export of bauxite raw materials, so that we can produce finished goods from aluminum,” said Jokowi.

Jokowi believes that Indonesia will become a major producer of nickel-based goods. Starting from lithium batteries, electric batteries, and electric vehicle batteries. According to him, this is an opportunity for Indonesia to show off.

“This is a golden opportunity to build a green economy going forward as we planned,” said Jokowi.

Previously, the Ministry of Energy and Mineral Resources (ESDM) noted that currently there are at least two bauxite mineral processing and refining facilities (smelters) in Indonesia. As for next year, it is targeted that 11 smelters will operate.

Special Staff of the Minister of Energy and Mineral Resources for the Acceleration of Mineral and Coal Governance Irwandy Arif said that until 2023, there will be an additional 9 units of bauxite smelters that will operate. Thus, in 2023 the total operating bauxite smelters are targeted to reach 11 smelters.

Previously, the Association of Indonesian Bauxite & Iron Ore Entrepreneurs (APB3I) said it would take about five more bauxite smelters to absorb domestic bauxite production.

The two existing bauxite smelters belong to PT Well Harvest Winning Alumina and PT Indonesia Chemical Alumina in West Kalimantan.

Daily Chairperson of the Association of Indonesian Bauxite and Iron Ore Entrepreneurs (APB3I), Ronald Sulistyanto said that it would take at least five more smelters to meet the absorption of domestic bauxite production.