SEA Today

Economic Activities in Sustainable Industry and Economy Sector

Following Brunei Darussalam, Arsjad Rasjid, Chair of ASEAN Business Advisory Council (ASEAN-BAC) and Chair of the Indonesian Chamber of Commerce and Industry (Kadin Indonesia), headed to Myanmar.

''ASEAN-BAC continues to strengthen cooperation and economic stability among ASEAN countries, including Myanmar. All ASEAN countries will grow together in sustainable and inclusive economics, encompassing all ASEAN countries, including Myanmar,'' said Arsjad.

During this visit, the entire ASEAN-BAC delegation discussed economic cooperation between Myanmar and Indonesia and also promoted priority issues and legacy programs, including the ASEAN Business Entity legacy project initiated by the Indonesian ASEAN-BAC leadership. The ASEAN Business Entity aims to increase and incentivize intra-ASEAN investment for the development of inclusive and sustainable industry and economy.

Arsjad Rasjid emphasized that the role of the business and private sectors in establishing trade or investment in sustainable energy is crucial to achieving ASEAN's economic growth and the net zero 2060 commitment. In this regard, the business and private sectors from Indonesia, in particular, are keen to deepen trade and investment relations with Myanmar, particularly in the development of new renewable energy ecosystems.

Myanmar and Indonesia have the potential to utilize solar, wind, hydro, bioenergy, geothermal, and ocean energy. In particular, for the hydro energy development, Myanmar and Indonesia are among the top 20 countries in the world with potential for hydropower generation as new renewable energy, but it has not yet been utilized.

''The potential for new and renewable energy needs to be developed by both countries as an effort for ASEAN to achieve net zero emissions. Myanmar and Indonesia can work together to utilize this new renewable energy as a source of electricity generation,'' said Arsjad.

In critical minerals, Myanmar has the world's third-largest critical mineral deposits and is rich in dysprosium and terbium, rare earth metals that are essential elements in making lighter electric vehicles. In light of this, Indonesia hopes to collaborate with Myanmar to build an industrial ecosystem for electric vehicles and batteries. The collaboration between the two countries can create new jobs and boost economic growth in both countries.

On the other hand, Myanmar has also taken steps to support the use of electric vehicles in the country, including building charging stations and granting import permits for electric vehicles to nine companies in the country. This incentive opens up an export market for Indonesia to market electric vehicles to Myanmar.

Responding to this, one of Indonesia's leading EV companies, Indika Energy, supports the development of the electric vehicle sector in Indonesia and ASEAN and explores the potential for mutually beneficial partnerships between Indonesia and Myanmar. 

''To achieve a sustainable future, Indika Energy invests in low-carbon businesses, including the electric vehicle sector. We launched ALVA, a two-wheeled electric vehicle and its ecosystem,'' said Azis Armand, Vice President Director and Group CEO of Indika Energy.

According to Azis Armand, investment cooperation with ASEAN countries, including Myanmar, will certainly be a good step in the effort to develop the Indonesian EV ecosystem throughout the value chain.

In addition to Indika Energy, other companies such as TBS Energy have also developed the electric vehicle sector in Indonesia through Electrum. The growing number of electric vehicle industries is a sign that Indonesia and ASEAN are capable of becoming leaders in the electric vehicle industry ecosystem.