The Jakarta Post
State-owned tin miner PT Timah is slated to invest around Rp 2 trillion (US$145.6 million) to finance expansion projects this year, including the construction of a tin smelting plant.
Timah corporate secretary Abdullah Umar Baswedan said in Jakarta on Monday that the funds would be partly used to finance the exploration of new tin reserves on the tin-rich Bangka Belitung Island.
Investment would also go into developing an US$80 million smelter in the province, repairing old ships, growing company subsidiaries and continuing exploration efforts in Africa, he added.
The publicly listed miner has yet to publish its annual report for the 2019 financial year but Abdullah estimated that production reached between 65,000 and 70,000 tons last year. This year, production is projected to increase 5 percent. But revenue during the year would rely much on global tin prices, which have begun to decline since January due to the coronavirus epidemic in China, the world’s largest tin consumer.
“We cannot control global prices. But we can control and maintain our export volume,” said Abdullah, adding that Indonesia contributed 23 percent of the global tin market, “If we exclude China, it’s more than 40 percent.”
Timah president director Mochtar Riza Pahlevi Tabrani, also on Monday, said the company was looking into exploring mineral reserves in Nigeria and Tanzania. The company was particularly close to beginning operations in the former, where it only needs “a sort of environmental impact assessment” to begin.
“The biggest challenge in Africa is limited infrastructure,” he said, “The second issue is security.”