JAKARTA (rambuenergy.com) – As oil price falls and many global oil and gas players lay off many of their workers, the US and Indonesia governments and private sectors last week held a discussion on how to boost business and investment in this country of 252 million during The 6th Indonesia-US Energy Policy Dialogue.
The discussion center on various topics such as the development of upstream oil and gas business, oil and gas infrastructure in particular in eastern Indonesia, the 35 GW power development program, the development of new and renewable energy, investment incentives, policy changes, as well as problems encountered by private sectors in investing in Indonesia.
Director General for Oil and Gas at the Energy and Mineral Resources Ministry I.G.N. Wiratmaja expressed his hope that the US energy companies continue to support and invest in energy related projects and developments in Indonesia, including the development of 35 GW power plant projects, deepwater projects in particular in eastern Indonesia.
“We invited investors from US to take part in the development in eastern Indonesia, not limited to only infrastructure,” he said.
The Indonesia-USA Energy Bilateral Consultations Meeting began in 1990 and it evolved into Indonesia-US Energy Policy Dialogue since 2005. The 5th Indonesia-US Energy Policy Dialogue was held on May 1-2, 2014 in Washington DC, US.
Sudirman Said, the Indonesian Energy and Mineral Resources Minister, expressed his confidence that US companies remained committed in investing Indonesia as well as respect the democratic transition process in Indonesia.
“We are not yet talking about numbers. However, all of those attending these event have the desire to maintain their presence in Indonesia,” he said.
As an emerging economy, Indonesia welcomes investment, including from US, added Sudirman.
Jonathan Elkind, Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary for International Affairs, US Department of Energy, said that US companies will certainly continue to make positive contribution to Indonesia, if their presence is still needed by Indonesia. He noted the US continue to monitor changes in Indonesia’s energy policies, including the planned revision of the Oil and Gas Law, but will respect the changes as it is domestic affairs of Indonesia.
A number of international energy players in Indonesia has often complained difficulties in investing in Indonesia including bureaucratic red-taps, legal uncertainty, overlapping regulations and corrupt practices.
Minister Sudirman Said has taken a number of efforts to clean up his ministry including improving transparency and simplifying procedures. In recent move, the energy ministry plans to conduct oil and gas working areas (WK) auctions via online.
The public is now waiting for the outcomes and follow-up actions of the policy dialogue. (*)