Remarks of President of the Republic of Indonesia at the Inauguration of the 13th National Congress of the Indonesian Hindu Students Association (KMHDI) at the Tadulako University in Palu City, Central Sulawesi Province, August 30, 2023

By Office of Assistant to Deputy Cabinet Secretary for State Documents & Translation     Date 30 Agustus 2023
Category: Remarks @en
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Om swastiastu,
Assalamu’alaikum warahmatullahi wabarakatuh,
Good afternoon,
May peace be upon us all.

Distinguished Minister of State Secretary Prof. Pratikno;
Distinguished Minister of Religious Affairs Yaqut Cholil Qoumas;
Distinguished Minister of Women Empowerment and Child Protection Bintang Puspayoga;
Distinguished Commander of the Indonesian National Defense Forces (TNI) and Chief of the Indonesian National Police (Polri) and also joining with us Special Staff to the President Ari Dwipayana;
Distinguished Governor of Central Sulawesi and Spouse;
Rector of the Tadulako University;
Distinguished Head of Student Associations under Cipayung Plus Group;
Distinguished Chairperson of the Central Parisada Hindu Dharma Indonesia (PHDI), Chairperson of the Indonesian Hindu Students Association I Putu Yoga and his members as well as chairpersons at regional level;
Distinguished Ladies and Gentlemen.

The city of Palu is very far away from Jakarta. But I was happy when I arrived earlier today, seeing the enthusiasm from the front. The enthusiasm here is extraordinary. When I see such enthusiasm like this, I usually want to distribute bicycles. But before that, I would like to convey a few things.

Ladies and gentlemen, esteemed guests,

The challenges we face today, today’s global challenges, are truly not getting easier, and in the future, they will become even more difficult, not easier. We all know that for almost three years of the pandemic, we are grateful that we have been able to overcome it well. But the challenges after the pandemic are uneasy, and many countries around the world are currently facing a direct economic downturn after dealing with the pandemic.

I asked the Managing Director of the IMF, how many countries are currently “patients” of the IMF. There are 96 countries, nearly half of the countries in the world are now “patients” of the IMF. Once again, it means that the current global challenges are getting more difficult. Economic crises, the pandemic can be overcome in many countries but economic challenges not. Food crises, the pandemic can be overcome in many countries but food prices have risen by more than 50 percent, some even more than 100 percent. Energy crises, in some countries, in the European Union, gas and fuel prices have risen, some even by 700 percent. If we increase our fuel prices by just 10 percent, there will be student protests for two months; if we increase it by 20 percent, protests will last for six months. Imagine, some countries have experienced gas prices go up by 700 percent.

Ladies and gentlemen, brothers and sisters, you can imagine how challenging the world is right now.

Rivalries and geopolitical condition are also, not only in the region, but also in the West, such as the Russia-Ukraine conflict. Moreover, it’s also heating up in our vicinity. What’s equally worrisome is climate change, which is now being felt by almost every country. What used to be cold is becoming hot, what used to be hot is getting hotter. Heatwaves, super El Niño are things we must face wisely.

And in Hinduism there is a teaching called Tri Hita Karana. One of the Tri Hita Karana is palemahan, the perfection of the harmony between humans and nature. This is often forgotten in our modern lives. We tend to think as if nature is just fine, but suddenly heatwaves are hitting almost every country in the world. Therefore, all of us are now haunted by climate change, all of us.

Hence, all countries are now rushing into the green economy. Everything is green. Global economy is currently transforming towards a green economy. Financing, funding are now prioritizing for green industries. The use of energy is also transforming towards a green energy. [All efforts are being carried out] because we all want to reduce the impacts of climate change. Everything is green. This is a challenge, but at the same time, it’s an opportunity. This is a challenge, but at the same time, it’s also an opportunity.

For this, our country has great strength and potential. Matters related to green energy will eventually enter the green economy. Let’s look at our country’s potential in green energy. We have a potential of 434 thousand (megawatt) green energy. We have a potential of 24 thousand megawatt of geothermal energy. From 4,400 rivers we have, a potential of hydropower energy reaches 95 thousand megawatts. We have a greater potential from solar energy, which reaches 169 thousand megawatts. We also have tried wind power energy in several provinces in Sulawesi island. It recorded a good result. A potential of wind power energy reaches 68 thousand megawatts. With all potentials we have, we can attract investments. We are also building a Green Industrial Park, an industrial area that is green, covering 30,000 hectares in North Kalimantan, all using green energy from the Kayan River in the province.

If we optimize this strength wisely, it will become our country’s strength, considering that other countries do not have the same potentials that I mentioned earlier. 434,000 megawatts is indeed significant. To that end, it is our collective responsibility to always remain consistent with the national vision, especially the tactical vision of a grand strategy in competing with other countries.

The downstreaming, as I often mentioned, if we consistently implement it, will propel this country into an advanced nation. I often give an example; nickel. Before, we exported it in raw form, its value was approximately around Rp30 trillion per year. But once we stopped it in 2020 and the exports must be in the form of semi-finished or finished form. Within one year, the figure jumped to Rp510 trillion. That’s just one product; we have other commodities including nickel, tin, copper, bauxite, coal, all of them, step by step, no need to rush, but stay consistent [to carry out downstreaming].

And, we shouldn’t be afraid because of being sued in the WTO. No, don’t step back. When we stopped exporting raw materials in 2020, we were sued by the European Union, sued in the WTO, and last year we lost. But I told the ministers, the ministers told me, “Sir, we lost.” Well, it’s okay to lose, but don’t step back.

I ordered an appeal process, we lost again. What was in my mind during the appeal process, it might take three years, maybe four years, maybe five years, until our industry is already strong, so our basis is also strong. If we are sued and we step back, this country will never become an advanced country. Moreover, palm oil, fisheries, seaweed, all of them will enter the downstreaming. Our seaweed potential is the second largest in the world, but we export it as raw material, raw material, and raw material again. We have to carry out industrialization, downstreaming and we will see how big is the added value we’ll earn. For 400 years since the era of the VOC (Dutch East India Company), we have been exporting raw materials, and do we want to continue exporting raw materials now? No.

We have been sued by the WTO, sued by the WTO by the European Union, we were also warned by the IMF. The ministers told me, “Sir, we got a pressure.” Keep going, don’t step back. If we consistently carry out this, without stepping back, it is our estimation that in the next 10 years, our GDP per capita will reach USD10,900 or Rp153 million. Then, in the next 15 years, we will reach a GDP per capita of USD15,800 or Rp217 million. And, when we are reaching the Golden Indonesia 2045, as we have calculated, we will have an income per capita of USD 25,000 or Rp331 million. This means that we have become an advanced country. All can be achieved if we stay consistent, the leaders don’t hesitate, aren’t afraid, and keep going, even if we are sued. Because there will be no country that rolls out the red carpet for us if we don’t seize it ourselves.

Now, we come to another topic. Do not be too serious. Please, come to the front. Oh wait, the quiz is not started yet. It will be a difficult question. No one could answer it. Please raise your hand, do not come to the front until I point you to come. The audiences up there also have right to raise hand. But do not jump to the floor. You can go down.

The question is, “It is far from your sight, but it is close to your heart” what is it? The one up there plese come to the front. The one who wears blue jacket. “It is far from your sight, but it is close to your heart” what is it? One is man and another is woman with glasses. The one in the right side and the left side. While we are waiting for the microphone, please introduce yourself.

Tyrsa Riani Daniel (Student)
Shalom,
my name is Tyrsa Riani Daniel, I study at the Faculty of Engineering, I am majoring in environmental engineering.

President Joko Widodo
Okay, environmental engineering. Pardon me, what is your name?

Tyrsa Riani Daniel (Student)
Tyrsa Riani Daniel.

President Joko Widodo
Okay, what’s the answer? Oh, you don’t have the answer? You only want to stand by me in the stage, right?

Tyrsa Riani Daniel (Student)
Yes, Sir. I just want to stand by you in the stage. I also would like to thank you for being a good President that makes Indonesian proud of you. I am proud of you. If we could do it, I wish that you would be the President for the next period. Thank you, Sir.

President Joko Widodo
It is not allowed by the Constitution. Now, please answer the question.

Tyrsa Riani Daniel (Student)
You live in Jakarta, which means that it is far from me but you are still in my heart.

President Joko Widodo
No, it is not the answer. Okay, now is your turn. Please introduce yourself.

I Kadek Febriana (Student)
Om swastiastu. My name is I Kadek Febriana, I am from South Lampung, Sir.

President Joko Widodo
Okay, from Lampung.

I Kadek Febriana (Mahasiswa)
Yes, Sir.

President Joko Widodo
Now, answer the question.

I Kadek Febriana (Student)
My Mom, Sir. She is far away, but always in my heart. But, in science, thing that is closest to our heart is gall but we can’t see it.

President Joko Widodo
The first answer is right. But, it is still not the answer. The second answer is the answer what I mean; gall. The question was hard to answer, but today Kadek can make it. Okay, please back to your seat. I had promised to give you a bike.

I Kadek Febriana (Student)
Can I take a picture with you, Sir?

President Joko Widodo
Okay, please back to your seat. What did you say?

I Kadek Febriana (Student)
Sir, can I take a picture with you?

President Joko Widodo
You have got the bike, now you want to take picture with me? Okay, go on. Please back to your seat. The bike will be distributed. There is still one bike.

Name one object in which when you put inside slanted, and come out slanted? The answer must be right. Please come to the front. The woman with glasses. Please introduce yourself.

Siska (Student)
Good afternoon. I’m so nervous, Sir. My name is Siska.

President Joko Widodo
What is the answer, Siska?

Siska (Student)
It is a button, Sir.

Presiden Republik Indonesia (Joko Widodo)
Please, answer the question.

Sandi (Student)
My name is Sandi.

President Joko Widodo
Where are you from?

Sandi (Student)
Surabaya, East Java.

President Joko Widodo
I see.

Sandi (Student)
It’s fishing hook, Sir.

President Joko Widodo
Pardon?

Sandi (Student)
It’s fishing hook, Sir.

President Joko Widodo
Okay, the bike is for Siska. Please back to your seat. The answer is button.

Siska (Student)
Sir, can I take a picture with you?

President Joko Widodo
Yes, sure. Now, please back to your seat.

Ladies and Gentlemen,

In order to support the momentum of transformation towards a green economy, I call on all KMHDI members to prepare yourselves, learn about [green economy]. Do learn about carbon trading, do learn about the carbon market, do learn about climate entrepreneurship, do learn about waste recycling, and do learn about battery technology.

Universities and higher education institutions should also be prepared to establish departments and faculties related to these areas, Mr. Rector. Because the world is changing. Our faculties including economics, engineering, social politics or any other traditional disciplines must be adaptive. The world changes rapidly. We all need to have the innovation and the willingness to embrace these changes.

Moreover, I also call on KMHDI to promote awareness about forest conservation, water conservation, waste management, especially plastic waste, and the reduction of pollution, which has become a significant problem for us today.

That concludes my speech on this auspicious occasion. By the blessings of the Almighty, I officially open the 13th National Congress of the Indonesian Hindu Students Association (KMHDI).

I thank you.
Om santi santi santi om.
Wassalamu’alaikum warahmatullahi wabarakatuh. 

(AP/LW)

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