NGO Urged To Cancel Mineral Export Relaxation Policy

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Malang (Greeners) – A coalition of civil societies, Publish What You Pay (PWYP) Indonesia, urged President Joko ‘Jokowi’ Widodo and Minister of Mineral Resources and Energy, Ignasius Jonan, to cancel on mineral export relaxation policy, both on ore materials and concentrates.

NGO demanded to revoke Government Regulation issued in January stating that it would pave ways for the government to issue permits to export ore nickel and bauxite or with low calorie, including below 1.7 percent for nickel and purified bauxite.

“This revision will give the opportunity to change mining company status from Working Contract (KK) to Mining Business Permit (IUP) and Special IUP (IUPK) without process stipulated by the 2009 Law on Mineral. In addition, it will also give leeway for IUPK to export concentrate for next five years,” said National Coordinator of PWYP Indonesia, Maryati Abdullah, on Tuesday (17/01).

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Maryati Abdullah said government blatantly issue a policy in contrast with the law which stipulated companies to do purification in Indonesia and against the article which stipulated all KK holders to produce purified mining products within five years after the 2009 Law on Mining was issued.

Aryanto Nugroho, Advocate Manager PWYP, said with relaxation on concentrate exports for the next five years, it would mean 13 years of time given to mining business to establish their industries.

“It just adds up the inconsistency from the government related to its policy,” he said.

Export Relaxation Triggers Natural Destruction

Hermawansyah, Director of Swandiri Institute, West Kalimantan, said that the policy would increase natural resources exploitation amid low support on the environment and rising social conflicts caused by mining activities in regions.

Based on Economics Investigation and People, University of Indonesia (LPEM UI), the ban on raw materials export has contributed to declining illegal mining in 2016. If export on raw materials re-opened, it will lead to more illegal mining activities.

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Based on the report, illegal logging is not limited to non-permits activities but also companies with permits but produces over quota or mining outside permitted areas or conduct bad mining practices.

“Swandiri Institute and Eyes of the Forest (EoF) West Kalimantan found that 95 percent of IUP with clean and clear status overlapping with forest areas without Lend Use Permit. We cannot imagine the destruction must West Kalimantan face,” said Hermawansyah.

Reports by HI/G17