Jakarta (ANTARA) - The US and Indonesia announced a strategic partnership enabling the latter develop its nuclear clean energy program by supporting its interest in deploying small modular reactor (SMR) technology to meet energy security and climate goals.

The strategic partnership was announced at the Indo-Pacific Chamber of Commerce and Industry Business Forum held in Bali on Saturday (March 18), according to a release issued by the US Embassy in Jakarta on Monday.

Indonesian Coordinating Minister for Economic Affairs Minister Airlangga Hartarto, US Ambassador to Indonesia Sung Y. Kim, US Department of State Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary Ann Ganzer, and the US Trade and Development Agency (USTDA) formally announced the Memorandum of Agreement and affiliated grants and contract signing as a deliverable under the Partnership for Global Infrastructure and Investment (PGII).

The agreement advances the goals of the Just Energy Transition Partnership (JETP) and will strengthen Indonesia’s leadership in the ASEAN region on the deployment of advanced, safe, and secure nuclear clean energy technologies, working toward the goal of Net Zero Emissions (NZE) in Indonesia by 2060.

Under the engagement, the USTDA has awarded a grant to PLN Indonesia Power (Indonesia Power) to provide assistance to assess the technical and economic viability of the proposed nuclear power plant to be located in West Kalimantan.

It will include a site selection plan, power plant and interconnection system design, preliminary environmental and social impact assessment, risk assessment, cost estimate, and regulatory review.

In addition, the cooperation will include US$1 million in new funding for capacity-building for Indonesia, building on its existing partnership under the US Department of State Foundational Infrastructure for the Responsible Use of SMR Technology (FIRST) Program.

It also encompasses support in areas, such as workforce development, stakeholder engagement, regulations, and licensing.

"The US-Indonesia economic relationship is thriving, and in Bali this week, we are seeing some of the tangible outcomes of our partnership," US Ambassador to Indonesia Sung Y. Kim stated.

"Today’s announcement of a strategic partnership to help Indonesia develop its small modular reactor nuclear clean energy program, as a key deliverable under the Partnership for Global Infrastructure and Investment, is an important milestone in Indonesia’s efforts to achieve its climate goals while promoting sustainable economic growth," he stated.

Indonesia Power selected Oregon-based NuScale Power OVS, LLC (NuScale) to carry out the assistance in partnership with a subsidiary of Texas-based Fluor Corporation and Japan’s JGC Corporation.

The proposed 462-megawatt facility would utilize NuScale's SMR technology and advance Indonesia’s clean energy transition.

SMRs provide round-the-clock reliable power, complement other clean energy sources, have flexible siting, and use a small land footprint.

SMRs incorporate advanced safety features, including designs to withstand extreme weather and seismic-related events and can be deployed to match the specific needs of a country’s power grid, with the ability to scale up as required.

SMRs can play a critical role in decarbonizing hard-to-abate sectors, including clean hydrogen production, heavy industrial processes, and water desalination to meet decarbonization and energy security goals, air quality standards, and clean water access needs.

The project will advance climate action and clean energy access throughout a critical part of the world and has the potential – as part of follow-on projects – to create thousands of jobs, pave the way for additional SMR projects in Indonesia and the Indo-Pacific region, and uphold the highest standards for nuclear safety, security, and nonproliferation.

PGII offers partners, such as Indonesia, a positive, sustainable model of infrastructure financing and delivery.

President Joko Widodo, US President Joe Biden, and European Commission President Von der Leyen co-hosted a group of G20 leaders in November 2022 during the G20 Leaders’ Summit to deepen engagement under PGII that aims to mobilize US$600 billion for global infrastructure investments by 2027.

The partnership is delivering quality, sustainable infrastructure that makes a difference in the people’s lives around the world, strengthens and diversifies our supply chains, and advances our mutual national and economic security through strategic investments.

Related news: G20 momentum for Indonesia to realize nuclear power plants: Observer

Reporter: Yuni Arisandy Sinaga
Editor: Rahmad Nasution
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