PAN China pours $105m in In­done­sia

The Pak Banker - - Front Page - Tom Mcgre­gor

CHINA has en­joyed re­mark­able growth over the past few decades. Yet the era of dou­ble-digit GDP growth rates ap­pears to have ended. So, what will be the next land of golden op­por­tu­nity? Will it be in Africa, South Amer­ica or South­east Asia?

Some econ­o­mists have set their eyes on South­east Asia. The coun­tries in the re­gion are young with grow­ing pop­u­la­tions, along with low liv­ing and la­bor costs. Con­struc­tion com­pa­nies can trans­form prim­i­tive jun­gle vil­lages into more mod­ern­ized cities. Many fac­to­ries are flood­ing into th­ese coun- tries as well.

In In­done­sia, the na­tion is rich in nat­u­ral re­sources such as oil, gas and min­er­als. PAN China In­ter­na­tional, min­ing re­sources, met­al­lurgy in­dus­try, lo­gis­tics & trad­ing and me­dia con­glom­er­ate, will in­vest $105 mil­lion in In­done­sia to con­struct a spe­cial eco­nomic zone in the re­gency of Seram in Maluku, In­done­sia.

The re­gent of Seram, Jakobus Put­tletha­lat, dis­closed to AN­TARA news agency that the in­vest­ment has been submitted to the Maluku pro­vin­cial government. "We have pre­pared 5,000 hectares of land for the KEK (spe­cial eco­nomic zone) project af­ter Gov­er­nor Karel Al­bert Kala­halu gave his ap­proval," he said.

PAN China will open the zone in a re­gion that is seek­ing to up­grade its de­vel­op­ments in the pro­cess­ing and the ex­plo­ration of its min­er­als wealth that in­clude oil and gas.

In­done­sia of­fers abun­dant re­li­able en­ergy re­sources and min­er­als, how­ever the coun­try strug­gles with wide­spread cor­rup­tion, lack of in­fra­struc­ture and equip­ment tech­nolo­gies fail­ing to meet world-class stan­dards.

It's the right moment for the na­tion to change into a more ad­vanced so­ci­ety by uti­liz­ing up­graded tech­nol­ogy to ex­tract its nat­u­ral re­sources. PAN China's eco­nomic zone could bring in numer­ous large-scale fac­to­ries, ware­houses, plants and re­finer­ies to store and trans­fer huge re­serves of oil, gas and min­er­als. The fa­cil­i­ties could serve other func­tions too.

"The first phase will soon start with heavy equip­ment al­ready moved to Gu­nung Tinggi for nickel ex­plo­rations," Jakobus said. "Ac­cord­ing to the plan, nickel pro­cess­ing, alu­minum, ferro-nickel, coal, steel and stain­less steel fac­to­ries would be built in the KEK."

The KEK can play a cru­cial role to im­prove the lives of In­done­sian by cre­at­ing more jobs, bring­ing in much-needed cash flow into the re­gion, and pro­vid­ing Chi­nese ex­per­tise for the ex­plo­ration and pro­cess­ing of its nat­u­ral re­sources.

In­done­sians could gain more knowl­edge to work in such highly tech­ni­cal fields. They must re­ceive proper train­ing as equip­ment engi­neers. PAN China should ed­u­cate them since mi­grat­ing thou­sands of ex­perts from China would be much too costly. The project can only suc­ceed with a good train­ing pro­gram for the lo­cals.

Jakobus ex­plained the eco­nomic zone could be an eco­nomic stim­u­lus for the re­gion. He es­ti­mated that it could pro­vide jobs for tens of thou­sands of his fel­low In­done­sians. But the jobs be­ing of­fered re­quire com­pe­tent work­ers with high-tech skills. La­bor­ers are ex­pected to know how to op­er­ate a com­plex pipe­line sys­tem ef­fi­ciently.

None­the­less, PAN China be­lieves they made the cor­rect de­ci­sion to in­vest over $100 mil­lion into the zone. "The KEK devel­op­ment project is a fol­low-up of a mem­o­ran­dum of un­der­stand­ing signed be­tween the Maluku pro­vin­cial ad­min­is­tra­tion and the Chi­nese province He­nan when Gov­er­nor Karel vis­ited China as a mem­ber of the en­tourage of Pres­i­dent Susilo Bam­bang Yu­do­hoy­ona in March 2012," as re­ported by Ber­nama News. In­done­sian of­fi­cials may have struck gold in reach­ing a deal with the Chi­nese con­glom­er­ate.

PAN-China's web­site says it's mak­ing "sig­nif­i­cant achieve­ments, owned many min­ing rights for nickel ore, coal mines, chrome ore, cobalt ore, man­ganese ore and iron ore. In the year 2010, the com­pany re­struc­tured and trans­ferred its main in­vest­ments to min­ing and met­al­lur- gy in­dus­try, while ex­pand­ing the former trades. In the near fu­ture, PAN China will fo­cus on global min­ing trades and in­vest­ments."

The com­pany has en­gaged in numer­ous projects and is gear­ing up for a more "in­te­grated sys­tem of min­ing" in In­done­sia. PAN China has pledged a com­mit­ment to "en­vi­ron­men­tal pro­tec­tion and pub­lic wel­fare of the lo­cals, im­prov­ing their liv­ing con­di­tions, cre­at­ing job op­por­tu­ni­ties and bring­ing tax in­flow," ac­cord­ing to its web­site.

The spe­cial eco­nomic zone for the re­gent of Seram in Maluku could es­tab­lish In­done­sia as the next land of op­por­tu­nity for global in­vestors.

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