Natural resources, energy and environment
Indonesia is one of the world's most favored
countries in terms of fishing water, minerals and
fertile soil. In addition, almost 60 percent of the
country is covered by forest. The significant assets of
coal, natural gas and crude oil - although the latter
has declined significantly - play an important role in
the country's economy.
The oil industry is one of the oldest in the world;
oil was found as early as 1883 on northern Sumatra.
However, many of the oil fields are old and their
content decreases. In 2006, Indonesia became a net
importer of oil (imports exceeded exports) instead of as
a former net exporter. As a result, in 2009, the country
left the oil-producing countries' organization Opec,
where Indonesia joined in 1962.
Major exports by Indonesia with a full list of the top products exported by the country. Includes trade value in U.S. dollars and the percentage for each product category.
The state company Pertamina manages the oil
production, but several foreign companies extract oil in
Indonesia and have invested in the oil industry.
Commercial extraction of natural gas started in
1977/78. The largest known gas reserves are found on
northern Sumatra, eastern Kalimantan and in the South
China Sea. The country is one of the world's largest
exporters of liquefied natural gas, mainly to Japan and
Indonesia is also one of the world's largest
producers of tin and gold and also has a lot of coal,
copper, nickel, bauxite and silver. The country is one
of the world's largest exporters of coal.
In early 2014, Indonesia introduced a controversial
ban on the export of unprocessed metals. The government
stated that the purpose was to stimulate domestic mining
and thus contribute to a greater proportion of the
profits from the mining industry staying in the country.
However, the critics warned of mass redundancies in the
industry. After a lengthy discussion, the two largest
mining companies operating in the country, the US
Freeport-McMoRan and Newmont, were temporarily exempted
from the ban.
Abbreviationfinder: A popular acronym site in the world covering abbreviation for each country. For example, IN stands for Indonesia.
Coal dominates the energy sector
Nearly half of the energy consumption in the country
is covered by coal, while almost one third comes from
natural gas and one sixth from oil. The rest of the
energy is extracted from hydropower and geothermal
energy (geothermal heat). Electricity is also extracted
mainly from coal, oil and natural gas.
Indonesia has decided to build two nuclear power
plants on the island of Bangka east of Sumatra. Nuclear
power plants are estimated to be able to contribute
around 40 percent of the electricity demand in Sumatra,
Java and Bali.
Many environmental problems
Extraction of natural resources often takes place in
a way that seriously damages the environment. The
existing environmental legislation is often not
followed. There is widespread illegal mining and logging
as well as poaching, although the state tried to stop
the illegal activities during the 2010s. Indonesia is
now trying to environmental certify its forestry in
order to compete better on the world market.
Since the 1960s, large areas of rainforest have been
harvested. According to nature conservation
organizations, a quarter of the country's forest area
has been cut down. Most of the forest is owned by the
state, which gives the right to cut down trees to
different companies. Illegal tree felling is a major
problem. Various estimates suggest that between 840,000
and 3.8 million hectares of forest are lost each year.
Despite Indonesia introducing a moratorium (temporary
halt) against harvesting of forest in 2011, a report
published in the journal Nature Climate Change three
years later showed that deforestation went faster in
Indonesia than in the Brazilian Amazon. Harvesting can
continue because corrupt politicians allow forestry
companies to decompose forest to make room for new
Another environmental threat is the annual fires that
are being planted to clear land to be planted with new
trees. Farmers, and especially forestry companies, light
fires in large areas and trust the fires to extinguish
during the rainy season. When the rain fails, it will
have disastrous consequences. In Kalimantan and Sumatra,
planted fires and traditional burning have led to forest
fires spreading uncontrollably. The smoke from the fires
has also affected neighboring countries such as Malaysia
In September 2018, President Widodo introduced a halt
to the cultivation of new land for palm oil production.
The ban is valid for three years. The goal is to develop
a sustainable and climate-smart palm oil production.
Indonesia is the world's largest producer of oil, which
is part of everything from biscuits to shampoos and
cosmetics. Palm oil plantations on Sumatra, Papua and
Kalimantan have grown uncontrolled in recent years in
line with rapidly growing demand. This has given big
profits to companies and good tax revenue to the state.
But the price has been high - destroyed tropical forests
and huge forest fires with toxic smoke development
throughout the region.
Indonesia is second only to China, the country in the
world that emits the most pollution in the sea. The
government has therefore set a target to reduce plastic
emissions in Indonesian waters by 70 percent by 2025.
The reduction will be through increased recycling,
reduced use and increased awareness among Indonesians
about the problem of non-degradable plastics.
FACTS - ENERGY AND ENVIRONMENT
Energy use per person
886 kilos of oil equivalent (2014)
Electricity consumption per person
814 kWh, kWh (2014)
Carbon dioxide emissions in total
464 176 thousand tons (2014)
Carbon dioxide emissions per inhabitant
1.8 tonnes (2014)
The share of energy from renewable sources
36.9 percent (2015)
Minister resigns after allegations of corruption
Minister of Youth and Sports Andi Mallarangeng is forced to resign after
being accused of financial irregularities in connection with the construction of
a sports arena in the city of Bogor in Java. Mallarangeng denies interference
but says he is resigning so as not to burden the government. Mallarangeng is the
first sitting minister accused of corruption by the KPK since the Commission was
formed in 2003.
Eleven Islamists are arrested for suspected terrorist plans
At police raids, 11 people are arrested, suspected of planning terrorist
attacks against several Western targets, including the US Embassy in Jakarta,
the US Consulate in Surabaya and the mining company Freeport-McMoran. The
suspects are believed to belong to a relatively newly formed militant group
called the Sunni Movement for the Indonesian Society (Hasmi), whose connection
to Jemaah Islamiah is unclear.
Widodo is elected governor of Jakarta
Opposition parties candidate in Jakarta governor election, Joko "Jokowi"
Widodo, wins big over government candidate, Fauzi Bowo. Widodo is often referred
to as a populist grassroots politician. After the victory, he has approached
Papuan leader is shot to death
Papuan independence leader Mako Tabuni is shot dead by police as he tries to
escape an arrest in Jayapura. The police shoot the flying man in the back. The
data goes apart as to whether or not Tabuni is armed at the moment. Authorities
accuse Tabuni of having been behind the violence and unrest in Papua during the
spring. The shooting resulted in violent protest demonstrations in Jayapura and
Demolition They are sentenced to 20 years in prison
The final trial of Bali deeds in October 2002 is closed. The bomb maker Umar
Patek, aka Demolition Man, is sentenced to 20 years in prison for producing the
explosive charge used in the largest bombing operation in Kuta Beach. Patek is
also convicted of involvement in bomb attacks against six churches in Jakarta in
2000, when 19 people were killed, as well as having helped build training camps
for terrorists in Aceh. He was the last of the chiefs in the Bali attack to get
DP's old treasurer is convicted of bribery
DP Party's dismissed treasurer, Muhammad Nazaruddin, is sentenced to four
years and 10 months imprisonment for a bribe for a contract awarded for the
Southeast Asian Games in Indonesia in 2011. Nazaruddin fled abroad in May 2011
after being fired as treasurer on grounds of the mutine suspects. However, he
was extradited to his home country from Colombia in August of the same year. The
case is seen as a disgrace to Yudhoyono's reputation as a corruption fighter.
Prison for Papuan separatists
Three Papuan separatists are each sentenced to three years' imprisonment for
treason because they advocated an independent Papua speech in the autumn of
Militant Islamist is sentenced to 18 years in prison
Militant Islamist Pepi Fernando is sentenced to 18 years in prison for
sending explosive charges in mail packages to police and moderate Muslim
Police ward off terror plans in Bali
The Indonesian Police's Special Counter-Terrorism Elite Force, Densus 88,
makes two raids against detention in Sanur and Denpasar, Bali, where suspected
militant Islamists with links to Jemaah Islamiah are believed to be planning
attacks on multiple targets. Five suspected offenders are shot to death by
police. The revealed assault plans have probably been organized by a Jemaah
Islamiah outbreak group. It is said to have been about robberies that would have
funded terrorist activities.