© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: Tesla automaker logo seen in Bern
SINGAPORE (Reuters) – Indonesia has received an investment proposal from US electric vehicle (EV) maker Tesla (NASDAQ :), the country’s deputy head of investment and mining coordination Septian Hario Seto told reporters on Friday. Indonesia is the world’s largest producer of nickel, a crucial material for electric vehicle batteries, and has been publicly courting Tesla to invest in the country to help develop its ambitious plans for the electric vehicle and battery industry. “I received their proposal yesterday morning … next week we will meet with them (virtually) to get an official explanation,” Septian said. Septian said he could not give details of the proposal due to a nondisclosure agreement, but said the focus of their discussions had been on batteries and energy storage solutions. “If they only want to buy raw materials, we are not interested. This (proposal) goes beyond taking raw materials,” he added. Indonesia, once the top nickel exporter, halted nickel shipments last year, in an effort to develop a complete nickel supply chain, starting with mining and then processing into metals and chemicals used in batteries, to meet the demand for electric vehicles (EV). Tesla said last year that it was looking to find reliable sources of nickel globally after warning that the current cost of batteries remained an obstacle to its growth.