American investor and technology mogul Elon Musk will send delegations to Indonesia next month to explore investment opportunities in the electric car battery and space launch station in Indonesia.
Elon Musk who is the founder and chief executive officer of Tesla, the U.S. automaker and aerospace company SpaceX said that he would send a team to Indonesia to look into details about the investment opportunities. As reported by an Indonesian news portal, the invitation was discussed during a phone call between President Joko Widodo with Elon Musk on 10th December 2020.
Indonesia is the largest producer of nickel and the country has a great plan to make Indonesia the biggest producer of lithium batteries
The Tesla founder is exploring the investment opportunities for setting up a manufacturing site in Indonesia that is known for the biggest producer of lithium batteries and the largest producer of nickel. Nickel was the main component for making a high-performance lithium-ion battery and Electronic Vehicles (EVs) use it such as Tesla.
According to the Coordinating Ministry for Maritime Affairs and Investment, Luhut Pandjaitan, the two parties discussed the electric car industry and the main component for electric batteries. President Jokowi was serious with electric car ambition – setting a target to have at least one in five cars to be an electric one by 2025.
Furthermore, Elon Musk is willing to offer a giant contract for a long period of time with Indonesia the largest nickel production as long as nickel is mined efficiently and in an environmentally sensitive way.
Space launch station in Indonesia
Apart from investment offers to Tesla, Jokowi also asked Musk to look into the possibility of setting up a space launch station in Indonesia.
Indonesia has several space launch stations plan in the pipeline. The National Aeronautics and Space Agency announced last year that it moved forward to build a spaceport in Biak, Papua. Lapan and the Russian Federal Space Agency (RKA) first worked on the Biak station plan in 2006 to develop it as a commercial launch site.
In addition, SpaceX has prior experience working with Indonesia. In 2018, the U.S. company launched Telkom Indonesia’s Merah Putih satellite into orbit, using its Falcon 9 rocket from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida.