Luhut Binsar Pandjaitan Responds to 'China-Centric' Statement

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Mahinda Arkyasa

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  • TEMPO.CO, JakartaCoordinating Minister of Maritime Affairs and Investment Luhut Binsar Pandjaitan responded to the question asked at the annual "CNBC Indonesia Economic Outlook 2021" event held online on Thursday, February 25, 2021. During the event, CT Corp chairman and founder Chairul Tanjung questioned the minister over the government's policies he consider to be 'China-centric'. 

    "Everything now seems to come from China, such as vaccines, investments, and Pak Luhut is considered the commander in charge and maybe Pak Luhut can provide an explanation to business-goers and the general public about it," said Chairul. 

    In response to the statement, Luhut Pandjaitan said that "[the statement] seems to convey a message that [Indonesia] is close to China, well yes, but so does with Abu Dhabi because President Jokowi's relation with the crown prince is quite exceptional." 

    Luhut later elaborated on Indonesia's close relations with other countries other than China by stating that Indonesia had received a record-breaking USD19 billion investment pledged by the UAE.  Luhut also mentioned Indonesia’s closeness with the United States which he described as "great".

    The Minister claimed that China views Indonesia as a country with a friendly investment climate and said that Indonesia shares the same sentiment. 

    However, Luhut Pandjaitan assured that Chinese investments in Indonesia has met the requirements set by the Indonesian government and assures that "they are not dictating anything." 

    MUHAMMAD HENDARTYO