Jakarta – State-owned mining holding company Inalum now owns a 51 percent share of gold and copper miner PT Freeport Indonesia after years of "tough" negotiations, President Joko "Jokowi" Widodo announced on Thursday.
"I received reports that our mining holding company, Inalum, has reached an agreement with Freeport related to our 51 percent ownership of [Freeport] from the previous figure of 9.36 percent," Jokowi said at the Indonesia Convention Exhibition (ICE-BSD) in Tangerang, Banten.
Previously, US mining giant Freeport McMoRan Inc. (FCX), a parent company of PT Freeport Indonesia, owned 90.64 percent of PT Freeport Indonesia's shares. The President described the three-and-a-half-year negotiation process as "very tough".
He did not reveal the value of the divestment, saying that he had authorized State-Owned Enterprises Minister Rini Soemarno, Finance Minister Sri Mulyani and Energy and Mineral Resources Minister Ignasius Jonan to handle the matter.
He said the completion of Freeport's divestment was a breakthrough for Indonesia, because the country could now enjoy more taxes, royalty and dividends from the company.
"Our national interests should come first," Jokowi said, adding that the successful deal was followed by the takeover of Mahakam Block, now managed by state-owned energy giant Pertamina. (bbn)