Indonesia’s energy diplomacy policy is considered to have an inward-looking perspective. Emanuel Bria, Indonesia Country Manager of the Natural Resources Governance Institute, stated at the PWYP Knowledge Forum with the theme “Indonesia’s Energy Diplomacy, High Politics or Low Politics” (21/4).

Bria explained that the international relations strategy in Indonesia’s energy was deemed not comprehensive, and the approach was still sectoral. Bria takes the case of China’s energy diplomacy, where energy is seen from a national security perspective. Not surprisingly, the team conducting diplomacy is integrated with the National Development and Reform Commission in its strategy.

In energy security, Indonesian policies reflect energy security elements, namely availability, affordability, accessibility, acceptability, and efficiency. “However, it does not include national and international security aspects,” Bria added.

According to Bria, the high dependence on oil imports without new exploration is considered a risk to national energy security. Domestic oil consumption is around 1.6 million barrels of oil per day (bopd), and production is around 900 thousand bopd, so it requires oil imports of around 700 thousand bopd. “The high dependence on oil imports certainly increases the external risk for domestic energy fulfillment,” said Bria.

95% of Indonesia’s energy supply comes from fossil fuels, and only 5% of the supply comes from new and renewable energy. Therefore, in the future, the government needs to increase gas, coal, and new renewable energy to fulfill national energy following the energy mix target.

In his presentation, Bria recommended that the government change the paradigm of economic development, which still sees energy as the driver of the multiplier effect economy and sees energy as an important aspect for national security. Then, as an institution responsible for national energy policy, the National Energy Council (DEN) needs to be led by a strategic ministry by involving the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Ministry of Defense in carrying out energy diplomacy. Besides, the government also needs to provide strategic support for the National Oil Company through high-level financial and diplomacy support.