Indonesia President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo doesn’t just want a Tesla battery factory in the country. In recent comments, the official highlighted that he would also want Tesla to build an electric vehicle plant in Indonesia. This should help the Southeast Asian country become an even bigger force in the emerging electric vehicle market.
It’s not just Tesla, either. The president noted that he had similar expectations for carmakers like Ford, Hyundai, Suzuki, and Toyota, all of which have expressed their intentions to push electric and electrified vehicles in the coming years. With these comments, Jokowi highlighted his intention to ensure that Indonesia does not just become a raw material supplier in the age of EVs.
Jokowi’s comments were shared with Bloomberg News, which was able to get an interview with the official. “What we want is the electric car, not the battery. For Tesla, we want them to build electric cars in Indonesia. We want a huge ecosystem of electric cars,” the president said.
Electric vehicles are inevitable at this point, so countries that hold key resources in the production of EVs and their components have the opportunity to become the automotive world’s next powerhouses. Indonesia is home to almost a quarter of the world’s nickel reserves, so the country definitely has what it takes to become a key player in the sustainable transportation era.
For Indonesia to accomplish this, however, the country would have to attract investors and carmakers willing to establish a presence in the country. A dedicated battery or vehicle factory from Tesla, the world’s premier electric vehicle maker by a mile, would be a symbolic crown jewel of sorts for Indonesia and its EV ambitions. The Indonesian president, for his part, has noted that he is being careful not to rush the discussions with Tesla.
“It’s still a discussion. Everything needs time. I don’t want to be quick with no result. It needs intense communication, and the result will show,” Jokowi said.
Elon Musk appears to be more than willing to consider a Tesla factory in Indonesia. The Tesla CEO has already hosted Indonesian officials in Gigafactory Texas, and Musk himself has met Jokowi in person. Indonesian officials have also invited Musk to visit the country this November to explore opportunities for Tesla in the country.
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