Indonesian President Joko Widodo (Jokowi) said the Emir of Qatar, Syah Tamim, was interested in investing in the Special Economic Zone (KEK) of Mandalika, West Nusa Tenggara (NTB).
“When we met the Emir of Qatar, I showed him a picture of Mandalika; the Emir is very impressed with the beauty of Mandalika,” Jokowi stated during the inauguration of the Tourism KEK of Mandalika in Central Lombok District, West Nusa Tenggara, Friday.
After seeing the beauty of Mandalika, the Qatari Emir said he wanted to take advantage of all the investment opportunities in the Mandalika area, Jokowi affirmed.
“He (Emir) said, President Jokowi, I have taken it all. I immediately told him to wait first. You can send a team first, and then we talk about it,” Jokowi revealed.
Considering the huge potential of the 1,175 hectares, Jokowi hoped that the investment in Mandalika KEK could be realized, as, if it is developed, it would have an impact on the welfare and economy of the people around the area.
“Investors should make clear rules. They should not sign a contract, and and later keep quiet,” he stressed.
If the investors do not build the project in six months after the signing of the contract, the agreement should be canceled, Jokowi emphasized.
“If you do not want to build it, you should cancel it (the agreement), because there are many investors willing to invest in Mandalika,” President Jokowi observed.
Later, the President has ordered his ministers to follow up on the results of the recent visit of the Emir of Qatar Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani, Coordinating Minister for Maritime Affairs Luhut Pandjaitan stated.
The Emir has expressed interest to invest in Indonesia. As the KEK Mandalika has good prospects, it will be offered to the Middle East country.
The KEK Mandalika has a terminal for cruise ships, and its airports runway will be expanded to reach up to three thousand meters. A halal resort will also be built in Mandalika.
“Qatar could be involved in all of those,” he added.
The Indonesian Energy and Mineral Resources Ministry has finalized a deal to buy liquefied natural gas (LNG) from Qatar at a price of US$7.16 per million British thermal units.
The LNG will be used in a power plant in North Sumatra or in eastern Indonesia, he said.
Meanwhile, President Joko Widodo (Jokowi) had sought greater investment from Qatar during a meeting with its Emir at the Bogor Presidential Palace on Oct. 18.
“His Excellency Emir Al Thani and I were discussing efforts to strengthen cooperation in the infrastructure and tourism sectors,” the president noted during a press conference after the meeting.
Indonesia and Qatar have agreed to follow up on several cooperation agreements signed by the ministers of both countries.
The ongoing projects that have been implemented under the Indonesia-Qatar investment agreements include the construction of a power plant by Nebras Power and PT Paiton Energy, worth $1.3 billion, as well as the construction of a gas and steam power plant Sumbagut 134, in cooperation with PT Pembangkit Jawa Bali, worth $1 billion.