JAKARTA. Businessmen of China and Indonesia have agreed to invest about US$1.63 billion to fund a development project in Morowali District, Central Sumatra Province, Industry Minister Airlangga Hartarto stated here on Sunday.
"This B-to-B (business-to-business partnership) is aimed at improving the national industry sector," Hartarto said in a written statement received by Antara in Jakarta.
He noted that the project was part of the government's efforts to intensify the development program outside the main Java Island.
Hence, the joint investment is expected to boost the development and well-being of people in the district.
A memorandum of understanding (MoU) was inked between two China-based companies -- Tsingshan Group and Delong Group -- and Indonesian corporation, PT Indonesia Morowali Industrial Park.
Thus, the latter company, along with its two Chinese-business counterparts, will invest $980 million to build a carbon steel plant, with a production capacity of around 3.5 million tons per year, at the district's Industrial Park.
Apart from the steel plant, Tsingshan Group, PT Indonesia Morowali Industrial Park, and Bintang Delapan Group also set a new agreement to construct a power plant, with a capacity of 700 megawatts and a total investment of $650 million, in the district.
According to the minister, the partnership was part of a concrete step following a bilateral meeting between Indonesian President Joko Widodo and Chinese President Xi Jinping during the sidelines of the Belt and Road Forum for International Cooperation in Beijing last month.
"The ministry has called on several industrial parks in the provinces of North Kalimantan, North Sulawesi, and North Sumatra to support this Belt and Road Initiative by endeavoring to build a concrete business partnership," Hartarto noted.
On June 16, the two countries had signed an MoU to establish economic partnership on the sidelines of the "China-Indonesia Cooperation Forum: Belt and Road Initiative and Global Maritime Fulcrum" in Beijing.
Coordinating Minister for Maritime Affairs Luhut Binsar Panjaitan, Chairman of the Investment Coordinating Board Thomas Lembong, and Ambassador of Indonesia to China Sugeng Raharjo had reportedly attended the signing ceremony.
Other stakeholders, including the Industry Ministry's Director General of International Business Development Harjanto and Director General of Industrial Development Imam Haryono, also witnessed the event.
During the forum, Haryono offered insights into the investment partnerships and information on facilities that are projected to be built at the industrial parks in the provinces of North Kalimantan, North Sumatra, and North Sulawesi.
Meanwhile, Harjanto remarked that the partnership was set in accordance with the national industry program that aims to develop the economic sectors in some provinces outside Java Island.
Editor: Yudho Winarto