Indonesia says ExxonMobil plans to invest up to $20 billion in the country

JAKARTA – US oil major ExxonMobil is planning to invest up to US$15 billion (S$20 billion) in a petrochemical project and carbon capture and storage (CCS) facilities in Indonesia, President Joko Widodo said in a presidential palace statement on Thursday.

The planned CCS facilities would be the biggest in South-east Asia. Mr Jokowi, as the Indonesian president is commonly known, met with ExxonMobil chairman Darren Woods during a trip to San Francisco for an Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (Apec) summit.

Earlier this week, Indonesia signed an initial deal with an ExxonMobil unit to explore investment in a petrochemical project in Indonesia to produce polymers.

ExxonMobil and Indonesian state energy company Pertamina also agreed to evaluate US$2 billion in investments in CCS facilities using two underground basins in the Java Sea.

“These large-scale opportunities could substantially boost industrial growth and decarbonisation in Indonesia, as well as the Asia-Pacific region,” said Carole Gall, president of ExxonMobil Indonesia.

The CCS hub would have the potential to store at least three gigatonnes of carbon dioxide emitted by industries in Indonesia and the rest of the region, Pertamina said.

Indonesia wants to use its depleted oil and gas reservoirs for carbon storage and is finalising a regulation that would open up storage schemes for carbon from abroad to be stored in the country.

The agreements were signed during Mr Jokowi’s visit to Washington to meet with US President Joe Biden, ahead of the Apec summit in San Francisco this week.

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