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Jokowi's presidency sees SOEs expanding overseas

Jakarta Globe - January 9, 2024

Jayanty Nada Shofa, Jakarta – From a presidential palace renovation to oil gas fields, President Joko "Jokowi " Widodo's economy-heavy diplomacy has culminated in Indonesian state-owned enterprises or SOEs expanding overseas.

Jokowi's government has been putting business-oriented diplomacy in its main international agenda as a means to generate jobs and spur growth. A decade of this diplomatic approach has bore fruits for Indonesian SOEs.

"We are using economic diplomacy to boost Indonesian SOEs' business activities across many countries. For instance, infrastructure development in Niger,... as well as the Philippines ..." Foreign Affairs Minister Retno Marsudi said in her annual press briefing in Bandung on Monday.

Retno was alluding to the projects secured by state-run construction firm Wika. In 2018, Wika inked a contract to renovate the presidential palace in Niger. The renovation project was worth approximately 20 million euros (approximately $21.9 million), according to the Foreign Affairs Ministry at the time. Wijaya Karya Beton, Wika's concrete maker subsidiary, won the tender for a railroad project belonging to the Philippines National Railways in 2022.

"Telkom has also invested in Hungary," Retno told the same presser, referring to when the state-run telecommunications provider via its subsidiary Metranet acquired 30.4 percent shares in the Hungarian mobile transaction solution provider Cellum in 2018.

State-run oil and gas firm Pertamina has secured some contracts overseas.

Most recently, Pertamina Internasional EP (PIEP) secured a 35-year extension to manage the Menzel Ledjmet Nord (MLN) oil field in Algeria. PIEP, Pertamina's upstream subholding, is in charge of handling the working areas abroad. The oil giant has been fully operating the MLN field via the Pertamina Algeria EP (PAEP).

Pertamina's overseas businesses include operations in Tanzania's Mnazi Bay. PIEP, which is operating the Tanzania gas field via subsidiary Maurel & Prom (M&P), has concluded the acquisition process of Wentworth Resources' working interests in the Mnazi Bay, according to the company's press statement issued last month. This increases M&P's working interests in Mnazi Bay from 48.06 percent to 80 percent. The remaining working interest goes to the Tanzania Petroleum Development Corporation (TPDC). However, TPDC has one month to increase its working interests to 40 percent.

"There is also a clean energy infrastructure cooperation between Pertamina International Shipping and Turkiye's Karpowership," Retno said.

The recently inked partnership between marine logistics subholding Pertamina International Shipping and Karpowership encompasses developing liquefied gas infrastructure, alongside expanding liquefied natural gas (LNG) networks.

Source: https://jakartaglobe.id/business/jokowis-presidency-sees-soes-expanding-oversea