This shows the commitment of PT Freeport Indonesia and Mitsubishi to build downstream through expansion, so that added value can be found in Indonesia.
Jakarta (ANTARA) - President Joko Widodo (Jokowi) on Thursday lauded PT Smelting's move to expand its copper processing and refining factory (smelter) to support the downstreaming industry in Indonesia.

Through the expansion of PT Smelting's factory, which was jointly built by PT Freeport Indonesia (PTFI) in collaboration with Mitsubishi, its copper concentrate processing capacity will increase from one million metric tons to 1.3 million metric tons per year.

"This shows the commitment of PT Freeport Indonesia and Mitsubishi to build downstream through expansion, so that added value can be found in Indonesia," Widodo said at the inauguration of PT Smelting's expansion in Gresik, East Java, on Thursday. The event was followed online.

Widodo said he hopes that with the expansion of PT Smelting's factory and another smelter being built by PTFI in Gresik with a capacity of 1.7 million metric tons of copper concentrate per year, Indonesia will be able to produce a total of three million metric tons of copper concentrate.

"In this way, new industries will emerge, such as those already in the development process for copper foil. Later, many will head to our country to build copper derivative industries," he added.

The President said he hopes that industrial downstreaming will be carried out not only for copper, but also for other mineral commodities, such as nickel, bauxite, and tin, to increase added value and create jobs in Indonesia.

"Don't let us send any more minerals in raw form, agricultural plantation goods in raw form. Everything must be at least half-finished or thankfully, it can be (processed into) finished goods," he added.

PTFI plans to continue increasing its copper processing capacity until the end of December 2023, so that by early 2024, PT Smelting will be able to operate with the new capacity.

With an investment of 250 million US dollars, PTFI has increased its shared ownership in PT Smelting from 39.5 percent to 65 percent. PT Mitsubishi Material Corporation holds a 35 percent stake in PT Smelting.

Besides expanding PT Smelting, PTFI is also completing its second smelter in the Special Economic Zone (SEZ) of the Java Integrated Industrial and Port Estate in Gresik. The construction of the smelter was 83 percent complete as of November 2023.

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Translator: Yashinta Difa Pramudyani, Cindy Frishanti Octavia
Editor: Azis Kurmala
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