Jakarta (ANTARA) - Minister of Investment Bahlil Lahadalia expressed optimism that the next leader to succeed President Joko Widodo (Jokowi) would sustain the downstream policy currently being promoted and implemented by the government.

The minister expressed belief that by ensuring the sustainability of its downstream efforts, Indonesia would be able to transform into a developed country and realize the Golden Indonesia 2045 Vision.

"I hope that the next president will continue this policy because I believe that there are some parties, who are against it," he remarked during the presentation of the value of Indonesia's investment realization in the third quarter of 2023 in Jakarta on Friday.

He noted that the discontinuation of the policy would bring Indonesia back to the condition during the colonial era, when the Dutch East India Company (VOC) had control over the country's natural resources.

"Those opposing the policy are exposing Indonesia to the risk of returning to the Dutch colonial era during which the VOC was controlling the country by taking its raw materials and exporting them," he remarked.

He stated that the downstream policy was originally initiated during the administration of President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono through the issuance of a regulation concerning the mining of minerals and coal in 2009.

However, the genuine implementation of the regulation only started in 2020 under President Joko Widodo's administration.

"We cannot afford to let people who seek to formulate programs that can hinder downstream policy governing in Indonesia. That would be dangerous. The next president should be brave and determined and possess technical knowledge," he stated.

According to the Ministry of Investment, the total value of downstream investment realization during the January-September 2023 period had reached Rp266 trillion (US$16.7 billion). The figure accounts for 25.3 percent of Indonesia's total investment realization value during the same period.

Various sectors, including mineral, agriculture, forestry, oil and gas, and electric vehicles, contributed to the downstream investment realization value.

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Translator: Ade Irma, Tegar Nurfitra
Editor: Rahmad Nasution
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