JAKARTA (TheInsiderStories) – Japan’ manufacturer Hashimoto Corp. and local firm PT Sula Kor Energi (SKE) will invest a total of Rp3.9 trillion (US$274.64 million) in the Special Economic Zone Palu, Central Sulawesi, said an official on Thursday (08/22). In the zones, Hashimoto planned to build wood pellet industry with costs of Rp2.4 trillion, while SKE to develop a 33 megawatts power plant worth of Rp1.5 trillion.

“Many tenants have come to invest in the Palu special economic zones (SEZ),” said Commissioner of PT Bangun Palu Central Sulawesi (BPST), Iwan Yunus in Jakarta.

Beside Hashimoto and SKE, he continued, there are several companies with substantial investment value that are already under construction in Palu. There is PT Wan Hong Indonesia, unit of Chinese Wang Hong, which invested Rp800 billion to build a copper processing plant in the SEZ.

“This production will be exported to China. They chose Palu because of its strategic location. Geographically it is close to China,” he stated.

Yunus revealed, there is also PT Indomangan Industri which is building a manganese smelter with an investment of Rp1.2 trillion. This company set up a joint venture company with Britain’ company. The manufacturer will bring in raw materials from manganese mines in East Nusa Tenggara and West Kalimantan to be processed in a factory being built in Palu. The factory is targeting to be operate in 2020.

In addition, there are several investors who are carrying out construction, including PT Alfa Industri Mandiri, which will build an Active Carbon Processing Plant, Coco Feat, and Coco Fiber made from coconut.

PT Sarana Dwima Jaya, which will build a mild steel plant with an investment of Rp10 billion and PT Sulawesi Global Commodity which is engaged in cocoa processing and drying warehouses with an investment of Rp510 million.

Palu has a geographical location that sells in the eyes of investors. It is in the center of Indonesia with 10,000 ships passing there every year. The city in Palu is also supported by the presence of Pantoloan Port, which is one of the best natural ports in the world, with a depth of 18 meters without dredging. A mother vessel with a capacity of more than 50,000 MT can lean at the port.

Yunus believes that the Palu SEZ is quite safe because it is located east of the bay. The distance between the bays is 9.5 kilometers. It is impossible for a big wave to come from the bay but from the high seas. So that the Palu SEZ is relatively safe, he concluded.

US$1: Rp14,200

Written by Lexy Nantu, Email: lexy@theinsiderstories.com