Indonesia Mining to attract $6b: BKPM


"Indonesia. . .is rich in various mining resources including gold, copper, tin, coal, bauxite and nickel "

Indonesia's mining sector could expect investment of up to US$6 billion in the 20102012 period, in part because of a greater degree of certainty following the enactment of the mining law, the Investment Coordinating Board (BKPM) says.

"The investment will come from all activities in mining including smelting," BKPM chief M. Lutfi said, adding that the lion's share would come from several large mining projects.

Those projects include a $4.6 billion nickel smelting plant in Halmahera, North Maluku, being built by a consortium of the state-owned PT Aneka Tambang (Antam) and three foreign companies.

Another project is a nickel project on Gag Island off Papua, which is also partly owned by Antam, Lutfi added.

Indonesia, the world's largest archipelago, is rich in various mining resources including gold, copper, tin, coal, bauxite and nickel. However, investment in this sector has not fully recovered from the regional financial crisis of the late 1990s.

Last year, investment reached about $1.35 billion, 2.5% more than the $1.25 billion booked one year earlier.

As for this year, the government expects mining and geothermal projects to attract $2.15 billion worth of investment.

Of this target, around $250 million was secured in the first quarter of this year.

However, things would improve gradually in the following years with the enactment of the 2009 Mining Law, which has provided certainty for investors in the sector, Lutfi said.

Among other things, the law requires miners to process their metals domestically. For the existing contracts, miners have been given five years to prepare smelters.

The government plans to issue a ministerial regulation setting out specific levels of processing required for each commodity.

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