Jakarata June 20 2023: Indonesia will stop exporting copper concentrates as soon as Freeport Indonesia and Amman Mineral Internasional finish building smelters next year.
“If these two big companies complete their smelters, that means we will no longer export raw copper because it will be processed domestically to become copper cathodes,” said President Joko Widodo in a speech on Tuesday. He expects both facilities to start producing in May 2024.
Copper is set to follow nickel as Indonesia’s next focus in the country’s push for more onshore refining as it seeks to climb up the commodities value chain. The government has had to push back its plans for an export ban several times as the local unit of Freeport McMoRan Inc., the world’s top copper producer, kept seeking extensions for a smelter that was started in 2021.
Last week, Indonesia granted both Freeport and Amman export recommendations to continue shipping copper concentrates until their smelters are finished.