Upon arrival at Juanda International Airport, Sidoarjo Regency, President Jokowi went directly to the Gresik Special Economic Area (KEK), in order to groundbreaking the construction of PT Freeport Indonesia’s smelter.
Also accompanying the President on the flight to East Java Province were SOE Minister Erick Thohir, Cabinet Secretary Pramono Anung, Head of the Presidential Secretariat Heru Budi Hartono, Military Secretary of President Marsda TNI M. Tonny Harjono, and Commander of Paspampres Maj. Gen. Tni Tri Budi Utomo.
Indonesia is included in the category of 7 countries that have the largest copper reserves in the world. This enormous potential must be utilized as much as possible for the prosperity of the people by creating the highest added value for the national economy.
President Jokowi asserted that the smelter was built to create added value for mining products in the country.
“This is why pt Freeport’s smelter was built in the country, namely in Gresik, East Java Province. This is a strategic policy related to the copper mining industry after we controlled 51 percent of Freeport’s shares and at that time we encouraged Freeport to build a smelter in the country. Because once again, we want that added value to be here,” the President said.
According to the President, the construction of smelters in this country will strengthen the downstreaming of the industry. The president said it would ask mining companies both private and state-owned to downstream so that their mining commodities have a higher value.
Downstreaming will also provide added value for the country which also means it will provide higher income to the country. In addition, it also creates more jobs, and makes the Indonesian nation more independent and more advanced.
“It was conveyed by the Minister that this in the construction period alone there will be 40,000 workers who can work, meaning that open jobs will be many in Gresik Regency and in East Java Province, not yet if it is operational,” he continued.
Built on an area of 100 hectares, PT Freeport Indonesia’s smelter will be the largest single line smelter in the world with a processing capacity of 1.7 million tons of copper concentrate per year or 480,000 tons of copper metal. PT Freeport Indonesia itself is part of MIND ID, a state-owned mining industry holding.
“I hope that the presence of PT Freeport Indonesia in the Special Economic Area in Gresik will be an attraction for other industries to enter this Gresik KEK, especially the copper derivative industry to invest here,” he explained.
The President also affirmed the government’s commitment to continue to provide full support in various matters so that the investment climate in Indonesia is better. Thus, it is expected that Indonesia will be increasingly in demand as an investment destination country.
“Earlier as requested by Minister earlier, the infrastructure will continue to be supported, the ease and certainty of trying to be supported, then the availability of human resources in accordance with the needs of the industry also later the provincial government and district government also support so that this Gresik KEK is more advanced, and Indonesia will be increasingly in demand as an investment destination,” he said.
Also present to accompany the President at the event were Coordinating Minister for Economic Affairs Airlangga Hartarto, SOE Minister Erick Thohir, Industry Minister Agus Gumiwang Kartasasmita, Energy and Mineral Resources Minister Arifin Tasrif, and Cabinet Secretary Pramono Anung.
In addition, there was also the Governor of East Java Khofifah Indar Parawansa, Regent Gresik Fandi Akhmad Yani, President Director of PT Freeport Indonesia Tony Wenas, and President Director of PT AKR Corporindo Tbk., Haryanto Adikoesoemo.