Indonesia planning US$12B battery venture

Indonesian state-owned mining company Mining Industry Indonesia (MIND ID) plans to partner with domestic utility and energy companies on a US$12 billion EV battery project that would leverage the Southeast Asian country’s nickel production.
Indonesia planning US$12B battery venture Indonesia planning US$12B battery venture Indonesia planning US$12B battery venture Indonesia planning US$12B battery venture Indonesia planning US$12B battery venture

Nickel Mining in South Sulawesi, Indonesia.

A joint venture called Indonesia Battery Holding will be formed by MIND ID and gold and nickel producer Aneka Tambang (ANTAM), with energy firm Pertamina and power utility Perusahan Listrik Negara also taking part.

MIND ID chief executive Orias Petrus Moedak related the JV plans on a webinar: "We are preparing a concrete cooperation plan, so that the nickel utilisation project can start immediately, to produce batteries," he said.

Moedak said the project's leaders were in talks with two potential partners from China and South Korea on an investment plan worth Rp. 177.6 trillion (US$12 billion).

"Indonesia Battery will be the holding company involved in making batteries from upstream to downstream," he explained. MIND ID itself is a holding company that holds majority stakes in other state-owned miners including ANTAM, PT Freeport and Bukit Asam.

The Indonesia Battery project fits with national objectives to keep metal production and processing in the country.

In 2019, state mining holding company PT Inalum floated a partnership with China's Zhejiang Huayou Cobalt Company to process nickel into chemicals for electric vehicle batteries - Indonesia is the world's biggest producer of nickel ore.

PT Halmahera Persada Lygend, a JV between Indonesia's Harita Group and Chinese mining firm Ningbo Lygend, is also building a high-pressure acid leaching (HPAL) plant on the archipelago's Obi island that targets the EV sector.

That JV agreed in September to supply Chinese metals firm GEM with 17.9 million tonnes per year of nickel compounds and up to 2.2Mt/yr of cobalt compounds once the plant is operational.