Report: Indonesia’s president wants Tesla to make electric cars in the country

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Report: Indonesia's president wants Tesla to make electric cars in the country
2017 Tesla Model X 100D Parked on Asphalt Road (Photo by Kevin Burnell from Pexels)

According to a report from Bloomberg on Thursday, Indonesian President Joko Widodo has asked the electric vehicles (EVs) maker, Tesla, to produce both its cars and batteries locally.

The president, known as Jokowi, stated in an interview that Indonesia wants to develop a “huge ecosystem of electric cars” as opposed to only using its natural resources to produce batteries.

In order to increase money, he added, Indonesia was thinking of taxing nickel exports this year. This may happen as soon as the third quarter, according to officials in the previous.

In meetings, earlier this year with Tesla’s founder Elon Musk, the president and senior government officials claimed to have asked him to take into consideration the Southeast Asian nation’s potential as a center for the production of cars in addition to batteries.

Earlier this month (via Reuters), Luhut Pandjaitan, a senior Indonesian official in charge of negotiations with Tesla, told the media that the American company had reached agreements worth around $5 billion to purchase nickel products from nickel processing businesses based in Morowali, Sulawesi island, Indonesia. The lithium batteries made by Tesla will use nickel materials.

Although Musk was “busy with domestic matters, regarding Twitter,” Luhut said, his ministry was still in negotiations with Tesla.

Twitter, a social media platform, and Musk are presently suing one another over Musk‘s effort to back out of his agreement to buy Twitter for $44 billion.

Jokowi asked Musk to visit Indonesia in November, when Indonesia would host a summit for the leaders of the Group of 20 major economies, during their conference in May.