After two years of discussion and deliberation, Indonesia’s controversial ban on raw ore exports finally came into effect in January – although in a slightly watered-down form. A long-standing fear in the ore industry was that the ban would immediately apply to any minerals that fall short of 100% purity. At the 11th hour, however, Indonesian President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono agreed to a “compromise” allowing certain concentrates to continue to be exported until 2017. The analysis from Norton Rose Fulbright is as follows.
Not satisfied, Indonesia’s Mineral Entrepreneurs Association immediately filed a challenge to the Constitutional Court. And some of Indonesia’s bigger ore miners, who have concession rights under contracts with the government, are now threatening to launch arbitration proceedings for breach of contract. They say the government is intervening in their ability to export raw ore, which is a basic contractual right.