Indonesian President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo believes that Indonesia has a serious chance at securing a deal with American electric vehicle maker Tesla for a potential production facility in the country. Indonesia has offered the EV maker a number of incentives, including tax incentives and permission to mine nickel.
Indonesia has been working hard to attract an investment from Tesla, arguably the world’s leader in all-electric vehicles, since 2020. The country would be valuable to Tesla considering that Indonesia has rich reserves of nickel ore, a key component for the batteries used in the company’s all-electric cars.
Numerous Indonesian officials have spoken with Tesla executives to secure a deal with the EV maker. A delegation of Indonesian officials visited Giga Texas to meet with Elon Musk. President Jokowi has spoken with Tesla’s CEO in person at least twice. Indonesia’s President clarified that investing in Indonesia would give Tesla benefits.
“I said to him that if you invest in Indonesia, I will give the concession of nickel,” Jokowi said, noting that Indonesian ministers are in the process of finalizing the subsidies.
Other incentives for Tesla include tax reductions and a subsidy program for electric vehicle purchases, which should help the EV maker establish a market in Indonesia. A running start in Indonesia would likely benefit Tesla, especially since the country is home to over 280 million people, making it the fourth most populous in the world.
Overall, President Jokowi emphasized that it is now up to Tesla to decide if the company will take advantage of the opportunity to extract nickel in Indonesia. The President also stressed that Indonesia welcomes investment in the electric vehicle battery and car supply chain.
“If they want to start from EV battery, it’s OK,” the Indonesia President said.
While Tesla has already established key manufacturing hubs in the United States, China, and Germany, the company still needs to build more gigafactories if it wants to achieve Elon Musk’s goal of selling 20 million electric cars by the end of the decade. Over the past year, countries such as Indonesia, Canada, South Korea, and Mexico have expressed interest in a dedicated Tesla facility.
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