Prabowo Affirms Indonesia’s Non-Protectionist Stance at Qatar Economic Forum

Prabowo Affirms Indonesia's Non-Protectionist Stance at Qatar Economic Forum

Doha, The President-elect Prabowo Subianto emphasized Indonesia’s stance on economic policies during his address at the Qatar Economic Forum on Wednesday, reassuring investors and foreign representatives that Indonesia is not a protectionist nation but rather seeks to safeguard its national interests while fostering economic growth and self-reliance.

Speaking at the forum, President-elect Prabowo clarified misconceptions about Indonesia’s economic approach, stating, “We are being misjudged. We are not a protectionist country. What we do is very reasonable, and any country in the world will fight or protect the national interests of their people.”

In response to a question posed by senior journalist Haslinda Amin during the live broadcast on Bloomberg TV’s YouTube channel, Prabowo outlined Indonesia’s strategy to capitalize on its natural resources while reducing reliance on imports. He stressed the importance of processing natural wealth domestically to benefit the Indonesian people and propel the nation towards industrial development.

“We cannot continue to import raw materials; it is not fair to our people, as we will not be able to become a developed industrial country,” President-elect Prabowo asserted, underscoring the imperative of Indonesia’s downstreaming policy to achieve economic self-sufficiency.

Assuring continuity in economic policies, Prabowo pledged to uphold and further the downstreaming policy initiated by outgoing President Joko Widodo upon assuming office. He emphasized that while downstreaming may require several years to yield significant results, it will serve as a catalyst for Indonesia’s economic growth.

Highlighting the potential of alternative energy sources, President-elect Prabowo pointed out Indonesia’s substantial imports of fuel oil and diesel fuel, amounting to US$20 billion annually. He expressed optimism in Indonesia’s ability to transition to biodiesel derived from palm oil, thereby reducing import dependence and fostering economic expansion.

“I am very optimistic. I have discussed this with many experts. I have studied about this,” Prabowo stated confidently, projecting a vision for Indonesia’s economic growth to reach 8 percent in the foreseeable future.

President-elect Prabowo’s remarks at the Qatar Economic Forum underscore Indonesia’s commitment to balanced economic policies aimed at promoting national interests, sustainable development, and inclusive growth, positioning the nation as an attractive destination for investment and collaboration on the global stage.