Attention! Starting Tomorrow, the Government Will Ban the Export of Bauxite


Starting from tomorrow (10/6), the Indonesian government is set to implement a ban on the export of bauxite, a move aligned with President Joko Widodo’s vision to bolster the domestic bauxite processing and refining industry.

President Jokowi emphasized the significance of this measure, stating, “Beginning in June 2023, the government will prohibit the export of bauxite ore.”

The ban on bauxite exports is expected to contribute to a substantial increase in the nation’s revenue, with estimates suggesting a rise from Rp21 trillion to approximately Rp62 trillion. This boost in revenue aligns with the government’s broader agenda of enhancing the industrialization of bauxite within the country.

Commenting on the upcoming ban, Minister of Energy and Mineral Resources, Arifin Tasrif, emphasized the government’s commitment to upholding the moratorium on bauxite ore exports, which is scheduled to commence on June 10, 2023. He clarified that no relaxation of the ban is intended, particularly in light of the less-than-significant progress observed in bauxite smelter construction, as reported by the initial contractors earlier this year.

Highlighting the current situation, Minister Arifin revealed that several bauxite smelter projects have yet to make significant strides in terms of physical construction on-site. A review conducted by the Ministry of Energy and Mineral Resources team at the end of the previous year indicated that eight smelter plans had not been fully realized in terms of physical development.

Given these circumstances, the government remains cautious about granting any exceptions to the export ban, particularly for companies involved in upstream bauxite mining such as PT Freeport Indonesia (PTFI) and PT Amman Mineral Nusa Tenggara (AMNT), as is currently being implemented in the copper mining industry.

Drawing an analogy, Minister Arifin likened the situation to a football field without grass, stressing that the lack of tangible progress in bauxite smelter projects necessitates the maintenance of the ban on exports. In this context, it is worth noting that Indonesia previously faced legal challenges from the European Union at the World Trade Organization (WTO) due to its ban on nickel exports.

In line with the objectives set forth by President Jokowi, plans are also underway to halt copper exports in the country later this year. The government’s steadfast commitment to fortifying the domestic bauxite industry, maintaining macroeconomic stability, and fostering sustainable economic growth through comprehensive policy measures underscores its long-term vision for the nation’s development.