TEMPO.CO, Jakarta - Coordinating Minister for Maritime Affairs Luhut Binsar Pandjaitan has asked Amien Rais, a former speaker of the People's Consultative Assembly (MPR), to desist from making any statement demanding the closure of Freeport Indonesia.
"See it first, it’s not that easy to close it,” said Luhut in Wisma Hijau, Depok, Friday, July 27.
Amien argued that Freeport had committed an environmental crime, thus he was against the extension of its contract and demanded the mine be shut for good.
Luhut said the government would deal with the problems, including violations that Freeport could have committed.
Luhut explained the government could not revise the rules or agreements that were made decades ago. “If we look for the mistakes then we will also look for past mistakes, it should not be like that,” he said.
Previously, on July 12, Freeport McMoran Inc. agreed on the release of 51-percent shares of its subsidiary, PT Freeport Indonesia, to Holding Mining Industry PT Indonesia Asahan Aluminum (Persero) or Inalum. The holding company will complete the purchase in the next two months.
PT Inalum president director Budi Gunawan Sadikin said the transaction value amounted to US$3,85 billion. Inalum will spend US$3,5 billion on purchasing 40 percent of Rio Tinto’s participation rights in PT Freeport Indonesia.