Tue, 16 Aug 1994

Govt awards 24 contracts for mining projects

JAKARTA (JP): The government yesterday awarded five working contracts for general mining to foreign joint ventures and 19 cooperation agreements on coal mining for domestic companies.

The working contracts were signed here by Minister of Mines and Energy I.B. Sudjana and executives of the joint ventures. The agreements on coal mining were signed by the president of the state-owned coal mining company PT Tambang Batubara Bukit Asam, Ambyo Mangunwijaya, and executives of the domestic companies in a ceremony.

"Under the cooperation agreements, eight companies are allowed to explore and mine coal in East Kalimantan, one in Central Kalimantan, five in South Kalimantan, four in South Sumatra and another one in Riau," Sudjana said, adding that those contractors will operate in a total area of around 1.6 million hectares.

He said the cooperation agreements were approved by the office of the State Ministry of Investment, the Ministry of Finance, and the House of Representatives (DPR).

"With the agreements, the government will receive a royalty of 13.5 percent of the coal to be produced by the contractors," he said.

The royalty payment will be managed by Tambang Batubara.


Since 1991, the government has closed the coal mining industry to foreign investors to protect domestic companies from fierce competition.

According to Sudjana, the government has no intention of changing the protection policy. "It is too early to change that," he said.

Prior to the 19 agreements, the government had awarded 11 coal mining contracts to companies which had been committed to investing US$1.30 billion, including $1.25 billion by the foreign partners in the companies and the remaining $4 million by the domestic partners.

The country's total coal production last year reached 19.8 million tons, as compared to 150,000 tons in 1988, while its coal exports increased to 17.1 million tons worth $534 million from 688,650 tons valued at $23.7 million.

Director General of Mines Kuntoro Mangkusubroto told The Jakarta Post after the signing ceremony that there are now more than 20 domestic companies waiting for approval from the Ministry of Mines and Energy for coal exploration in the country.

"The documents for their contracts are now under examination. They are expected to explore for coal in a combined area of two million hectares in Aceh, Jambi, Riau, South Sulawesi and West and South Kalimantan," Kuntoro said.

General mining

Sudjana said that the five joint ventures that were awarded working contracts yesterday will operate in Irian Jaya, North Sulawesi and South and North Sumatra.

PT Ingold Antares, a joint venture that is 80 percent owned by Ingold Ltd. of Canada and 20 percent by PT Kalirindo Gunung Minerals, was awarded a contract for the exploration and production of copper and gold in a 1.08 million-hectare plot of land in Irian Jaya.

Eastern Irja Mining Corp. will conduct explorations for copper and gold in Irian Jaya in an area of 1.23 million hectares. The company is 80 percent owned by the U.S. Eastern Mining Co., 10 percent by PT Setdco Ganesha and another 10 percent by PT Bakrie Indocopper Investama Corp.

PT Newcrest Nusa Sulawesi will survey for copper and gold in a 1.12-million hectare plot of land in North Sulawesi. The company is a joint venture 90 percent owned by Newcrest Mining Ltd. of Australia and 10 percent by PT Austindo Nusantara Jaya.

Paragon Perdana Mining, a joint venture 70 percent owned by Hong Kong's Paragon Resources Ltd. and 30 percent by PT Keikan Perdana Mining, will survey for zeolite in an area of 6,607 hectares in Lampung, South Sumatra.

Miwah Tambang Emas -- a joint venture 90 percent owned by Australia's Highlands Gold Pty. Ltd. and 10 percent by PT Marhuama Subur Gunung Minerals -- will survey for gold in a 211,790-hectare land in Aceh. (fhp)

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