Jakarta (ANTARA) – President Joko Widodo (Jokowi) encouraged the people, especially cadres of the Indonesian Democratic Party of Struggle (PDIP), to not give up on protecting Indonesia’s natural wealth.
“We must not back down and not be afraid because natural wealth exists in Indonesia, (and) we want them to be utilized by our people,” President Jokowi remarked at the 50th anniversary of the PDIP here on Tuesday.
Jokowi, in his speech, highlighted President Soekarno’s statement in 1965 to reject dependence on imperialism.
“(We must) expand equal and mutually benefiting cooperation as President Soekarno conveyed in 1965, so that we are not dictated by and depend on any country. This is what we want to do: be independent, independent, independent,” the president emphasized.
He stated that the government had not surrendered from any disputes regarding its policy of the raw nickel export ban.
“We carry on, even though we are haunted by the (raw nickel-export ban dispute) (and) lost at the World Trade Organization (WTO), we still stop bauxite (exports). We may also end (raw) copper export in the middle of the year,” the president stated.
At the ASEAN-EU Summit on December 14, 2022, President Jokowi also reaffirmed his standing about the raw nickel export cessation policy and his view about the EU’s lawsuit against Indonesia to the WTO due to the raw nickel export ban.
“In that forum, I say the partnership must be equal, and there must be no coercion, no country should dictate, and no developed countries should feel their standards are better than ours,” the president explained.
The government seeks to build a large system that integrates Indonesia’s natural resources, such as nickel, bauxite, copper, and tin, which can produce finished or semi-finished goods that provide added value and create jobs.
Although Indonesia has lost in the raw nickel export ban dispute at the WTO, Jokowi told Minister of Foreign Affairs Retno Marsudi to not step down.
“Don’t surrender because this will be the great leap of our country’s civilization. Why do I keep repeating this? Because I want the next president to continue this and not be frightened in the nation’s interests and for the country’s benefits,” the president said.