Without Indonesia’s Nickel, EVs Have No Future in America – by Luhut Binsar Pandjaitan (Foreign Policy – May 1, 2024)


The IRA and Senate opposition to a free trade deal with Jakarta are undermining the United States’ green transition.

Luhut Binsar Pandjaitan is Indonesia’s coordinating minister of maritime and investment affairs.

Without Indonesian nickel, the United States’ electric vehicle market will flounder. My nation sits on the world’s largest reserves of the metal that is central to EV batteries. In 2023, Indonesia exported over half the world’s nickel products. In the coming years, this share is projected to grow.

Yet some members of the U.S. Congress, working together with Indonesia’s foreign competitors, have resolved to stymie the import of refined nickel from my country. So far, they are succeeding. But when taken together with measures passed in March compelling companies to shift away from selling gas-powered vehicles, it is ultimately U.S. auto workers who will lose out.

U.S. President Joe Biden’s Inflation Reduction Act (IRA) has fundamentally altered the playing field. U.S. manufacturers cannot access its subsidies unless inputs come from a country with which the United States has a free trade agreement—which Indonesia does not.

For the rest of this article: https://foreignpolicy.com/2024/05/01/indonesia-nickel-green-energy-ev-fta-congress/