Prabowo’s Plans, Downstreaming to Increase Economy


Indonesia’s future President, Prabowo is famous for his ambition to increase the country’s economy. One of his biggest programs is downstreaming various raw minerals including nickel and gaining more tax to help country development.

On the surface, this program may look promising since it gives massive benefits and increases a country’s potential in the global market. But, this program can be very challenging to Indonesia. As we know, Indonesia is still dealing with infrastructure development and high corruption levels, especially in tax revenue.

Indonesia with Downstreaming Program

If Indonesia can’t provide a better solution for that problem, downstreaming programs only become a new area for corruption or other criminal cases.

As far as we know, this program actually became one of the most favorite programs by the general public. Most Indonesians already praise Prabowo for continuing the Jokowi program since it can help local industry and manufacture.

In one of the interviews with CNBC Indonesia, Prabowo already stated if the key to boost Indonesia natural resources is through downstreaming. Even though he hasn’t officially become president, he already prepared a roadmap to downstreaming top 21 materials and how much funding is needed.

We already calculate it, at least we need Rp 8,479 trillion or US$545 billion to be able downstreaming 21 materials. If we look closer at the materials one by one, each of them actually already has a stable industry. We can enhance it and put more value to gain more profit including pharmacy’’.

The Materials in Prabowo’s Leadership

The interview also stated if Prabowo has plans to downstreaming 21 materials in his leadership. But, why does he only focus on 21 materials when Indonesia has hundreds of commodities including rare material and metal?

According to the Indonesian media, these materials are actually Indonesia’s best exports. These are coconut, rubber, biofuels, steel, gold, silver, asphalt, coal, nickel, tin, copper, bauxite, petroleum, natural gas, palm, wood logs, pine resin, shrimp, fisheries, crab, seaweed, and salt.

You are probably familiar with a few of these commodities like palm, coal, nickel etc. But do you ever know if Indonesia also exports tons of seaweed and salt and wondering how this can be used in industry?

Seaweed can be used in various industries like food and beverages, even pharmacy. For salt, it’s not referring to salt that you usually use for cooking but special salt for certain industries such as textile, pharmacy, cosmetics, and etc.

In the same interview, Prabowo also mentioned if the downstreaming of marine products will also become one of the top priorities in the future.

Marine products can be used to build the basis of everything. So, downstream means that all our natural resources must be processed in Indonesia,

As an archipelago country, Indonesia has massive potential in this industry. This is also the reason why Prabowo wants to make marine products as a starting point for Indonesia’s downstreaming program.

Downstreaming Advantages

Even though downstreaming is one of the biggest potential, many Indonesians haven’t understood the benefit of this program. Most mainstream media only mention giving more value to materials and gaining more profit. Some media also mention this program as a chance to become more independent and become one of the biggest economic players in the world.

That’s not entirely false but downstreaming actually more about profit or economic power. What’s the benefit? Here’s the list.

1. Increasing the Product’s Worth

Downstreaming raw materials and metal through extra processing from semi-goods into finished goods will add value to the product. This not only will give better selling price but also increase the quality. With better quality, Indonesia products will have better benefits in a competitive global market and this means better tax for the country.

2. Opening New Jobs

As we know, Indonesia’s unemployment rate is considered not good so the government needs to create new jobs for locals. In the future, this program will not only be beneficial for high skilled workers but also for low skilled workers.

The downstreaming needs a massive amount of professional and trained workers in order to maintain the quality of the final product. So, with this kind of program, it can create various jobs that will help reduce Indonesia’s unemployment level and gain more tax revenue from the public.

3. Increasing National Economic Growth

Due to the pandemic, Indonesia’s economic growth has hit a low record. If you compared to another country, Indonesia economic grow actually not very bad but if you look at the effect to the general public you will understand the impact.

With this program, Indonesia not only can add their value but also can increase their national growth by creating multiple jobs. Therefore, this downstreaming program became one of the national top priority because of its massive impact on the national economy.

4. Conquering International Market

Even though Indonesia’s domestic market is good enough, the government wants to increase the number of export products. Through this program, Indonesia is not only able to reach higher quality and international standards but also can improve the quantity of their product to meet International needs.

Indonesia also has potential to create new products that can be targeted to the international market and open up opportunities to increase export, national economic growth, and popularity in the global market.

5. Optimizing Natural Resources

We all know if Indonesia is famous for their rich natural resources but unfortunately this country hasn’t been able to maximize its potential. By adding the value and quality of their export product, Indonesia not only gain financial benefit but also contributes to global sustainability challenge.

As we know nowadays many countries are starting to apply eco-friendly business models to help reduce the environmental crisis. With this program, Indonesia can minimize the waste product and sell the final goods to the neighboring countries especially in ASEAN.  It will reduce the carbon print and contribute to more sustainability and ethical business.

Downstreaming is one of the keys to change the country in many aspects. Not only the economy but also its behavior in the global market. So, Indonesia’s future development plan to make downstreaming its priority is very understandable.

If you look at Indonesia development, actually this program can be implemented in near time. Also, considering its massive infrastructure development, we can see its potential faster than we predict.  Let’s hope this program will go well in the future because Indonesians really need it.  

Read Also: Prabowo’s 8 National Programs, Will They Be Effective?

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