Terminology ‘smoke and mirrors’ and ‘hide hard truths’ are the two keywords used by the author John Mcbeth which was published on Tuesday (1/23) ago. Approximately the meaning of "smoke and mirrors" is fraud or lies, while "hide hard truths" are covering up the facts or truth as the art of leadership.
Of course this invites broad appeal and has become viral on social media. Even the warmest conversation lately.
The object of Mcbeth's writings is an example of a matter of protracted negotiations with US mining giant Freeport McMoran Copper & Gold, a deceptive game that includes everything from beef to natural resources to infrastructure.
Even though it is not new, confusion and truth-seeking are officially seen in the 2019 legislative and presidential elections. Jokowi and his palace turned the wheel to see the need to show achievements.
Like Yudhoyono's request in mid-2011 when the Australian government suspended livestock exports directly to Indonesia regarding animal welfare issues, and Jakarta decided that there would be repayment by ordering its own prohibition.
Over the next two years, Jokowi reduced cattle imports by half and tried to convince consumers that local industry could fill the gap when prices rose - and one of the lowest per capita meat consumption rates in Asia - clearly indicating it was impossible.
Fast forward to the Jakarta-Bandung high-speed railroad project worth US $ 5.8 billion supported by China. Once glimpsed as an example of Jokowi's ambitious infrastructure program and is now stalled due to land acquisition problems that should have been predicted.
Though Jokowi attended the project's first stone laying ceremony in January 2016, only to see Transportation Minister Ignasius Jonan stop the project five days later because of some "unresolved issues".
Jokowi and the Chinese people see this is not funny. In July 2016, in the same month, the construction permit for the project was finally issued, Ignasius - former Managing Director of PT Kareta Api Indonesia - was finally fired.
The President should have studied the problem. In mid-2015, he had led the solution from the Japanese-funded Batang power plant in Central Java, worth US $ 4 billion, only finding local farmers still refusing to sell a piece of land.
The court finally decided the project could continue, but the fast train project still did not go well despite the efforts of State Minister for State Enterprises Rini Soemarno, who had just appeared in July 2016 to hold another ground breaking - this one was a tunnel.
Mcbeth said all the stories were full of lies and deception of facts.
However, it takes a lot of things to defeat the whole story of Freeport, which began with a framework agreement last year which at that time was a major victory for the Jokowi government in forcing the company to approve the divestment of 51% of its shares in its subsidiary PT Freeport Indonesia.
Maybe so, but it seems no one has noticed that the lie is in small print. In fact, the media in Indonesia failed to show when important questions regarding the assessment of selling prices and management control were not yet resolved.
A little surprised later that the negotiations continued, often interspersed with convincing statements by senior government officials that the final final agreement was only around rhetoric.
So far, there are at least four deadlines imposed by the government, all of which are based on the extension of Freeport's permit which allows it to continue exporting copper concentrates from the Grasberg mine highlands in the highlands of Papua.
Rejecting the permit will obviously harm the company, but it will also significantly cut government revenue and, perhaps more importantly, cause workers to lay off which could trigger unrest in the Papua region which is currently unstable.
In the last show and broadcast, the government last week ceremonially signed a memorandum of understanding in which he will hand over 10% of PT Freeport Indonesia's shares which still need to be obtained by the Papua provincial government.
The government's attention has also recently turned to the Marsela natural gas project in eastern Indonesia, which for some reason, even some senior Indonesian politicians cannot imagine, Jokowi wants to be developed on a remote island that is rarely inhabited.
Joint venture partners Inpex (Japan) and Shell (Netherlands) have dragged their feet, arguing that only offshore facilities are reasonable, given the underwater terrain and lack of existing infrastructure.
With a seemingly fat project, the government announced earlier this month that the partners were working on a detailed plan for an onshore plant to be completed by the end of this year. It's just that, there's no word from one of the companies.
Actually what Mcbith wrote was reasonable, even if not excessive, representing the voice of investors. Of course the Jokowi Government has a view that must be appreciated by investors.
As in the case of the Jakarta-Bandung high-speed train project, despite the obstacles in the beginning, the land acquisition process continued. When this news was written, land acquisition had reached 65%. That's why the China Development Bank (CDB) and Industrial and Commercial Bank of China are reported to be ready to disburse loans of US $ 5 billion. The funds will be used to accelerate the process of land acquisition while starting projects that can already be done on existing land.
On the other hand, the project has left a big question mark, in the middle of the CDB and ICBC is ready to become an extension of the Chinese government, and the funds are ready to be multiplied for other infrastructure projects, but the Jokowi Government has not shown a larger loan from China.
Freeport's more crucial question is that Freeport wants the 51% selling price to be based on potential content until 2041. Meanwhile, the Jokowi Government wants Freeport Indonesia's selling price based on the closing price of the contract extension in 2021. There is clearly a very significant price difference.