Tenggara Backgrounder December 28

Uighurs: Questioning Chinese factors in Indonesia

News about the alleged oppression of the Uighurs in Xinjiang, China, has sparked outrage among Indonesians. Difference responses from the government and the public, however, might indicate the current political landscape in Indonesia.


Issue update: Electability gap, shrinking or not?

The Indonesian Survey Institute’s (LSI) latest survey reveals that the electability rate of presidential candidate Prabowo Subianto and running mate Sandiaga Uno remains stagnant compared to incumbent President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo and vice-presidential candidate Ma’ruf Amin. Yet, other surveys indicate that this is not the case.


New Permenaker revolutionary, yet controversial

On Nov. 23, Manpower Minister Hanif Dhakiri enacted Manpower Minister Regulation (Permenaker) No. 15/2018 on minimum wage that includes a new regulation regarding sectoral minimum wage (UMS) negotiations. The regulation, however, drew strong opposition from various labor unions as several points may lead to contentious interpretations.


Issue update: Indonesia now controls Freeport  

The Indonesian government, through PT Indonesia Asahan Aluminium (Inalum), has finally taken over PT Freeport Indonesia (PTFI) -- a subsidiary of American gold and copper miner Freeport McMoran (FCX) -- and now controls one of the world’s biggest gold and copper mines in Grasberg, Papua, after closing a US$3.85 billion deal last Friday, increasing the government’s share in PTFI to 51.23 percent from only 9.36 percent.


Issue update: The apprehension of local steel players

The entry of new steel producing technology -- oxygen blown converter-based (OBC) -- from China brought some fresh air to the declining local steel industry. Nonetheless, the growing number of OBC steel producers and its controversial environmental consequences has irked local players whose electronic furnace-based technology was said to be more expensive and uncompetitive.