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Indonesia Nickel Export Ban: Impact on the Mining Industry

Author: Jeremy Simanjuntak, Mon, Oct 9th 2023, 09:54


Indonesia has emerged as a global leader in nickel production, accounting for 48.4% of the world's total nickel output in 2022. With abundant nickel reserves and government initiatives, the country plays a pivotal role in the global supply chain for nickel, a crucial component in stainless steel and electric vehicle (EV) batteries.

Nickel Export Ban in Indonesia

Since the enactment of the Mining Law in 2009, Indonesia has implemented regulations to restrict the export of unprocessed nickel ore, aiming to promote domestic processing. Recent regulations, such as Ministry of Trade Regulation Number 22 of 2023, prohibit all types of raw nickel ore exports.

Impact on Indonesia's Mining Industry

1. Development of Downstream Industry:

The nickel export ban encourages investments in smelting and refining, elevating the value of nickel-based products.

2. Job Creation:

The growth in nickel processing leads to job opportunities, reducing unemployment in nickel-rich regions.

3. Increase in Government Revenue:

The government benefits from added value and income taxes generated by the thriving domestic nickel industry.

4. Trade Balance:

The ban may reshape trade dynamics by decreasing nickel exports but increasing the value of related exports.

5. Economic Diversification:

Transitioning to downstream processing enhances economic resilience by reducing reliance on a single commodity.

6. Global Market Influence:

Indonesia's actions in the nickel industry can impact global prices and supply.

7. Infrastructure Development:

Growth in the nickel industry necessitates infrastructure development, benefiting various sectors.

8. Technological Advancements:

The industry's growth fosters domestic technology development and innovation.

Key Takeaways

Indonesia's nickel export ban reflects a strategic shift towards nurturing domestic development and sustainable nickel industry. Despite global disruptions, the ban has spurred growth in Indonesia's nickel processing sector, promising to reshape the nation's economic landscape and global role in the nickel industry.


This article has been contributed by Jeremy Simanjuntak of Armila Rako, a corporate law firm based in Jakarta. The above article does not, and is not intended to, constitute legal advice; instead, this article is for general informational purposes only. Information contained in this article may not constitute the most up-to-date legal or other information. Should the readers have any inquiries, readers can contact the authors at  Any reliance on this article is at the user’s own risk.