Fri. Feb 26th, 2021

JAKARTA — When Indonesia’s parliament passed a new slate of deregulation that, among other things, drastically strips back environmental protections against coal mining, critics and protesters denounced it as catering to business interests. Now, a new report lays bare what many already suspected: several of the politicians who pushed for the new legislation have links to the mining companies that stand to benefit from the changes. The report, compiled by a coalition of Indonesian NGOs, uses corporate registries and other publicly available sources to map out the connections between the mining and “dirty energy” industry and the drafting of the so-called omnibus law on job creation. “There has been a massive potential for conflicts of interest,” Ahmad Ashov Birry, a spokesman for the coalition, said at the recent online launch of the report. He said the coalition had identified 18 politicians mired in potential conflicts of interest, including prominent figures such as Airlangga Hartarto, the coordinating minister for the economy; Luhut Binsar Pandjaitan, the coordinating minister in charge of investment and a close confidant to President Joko Widodo; and Puan Maharani, the parliamentary speaker and a senior member of Widodo’s ruling party. A list of 18 politicians and public officials with affiliations to mining and dirty energy businesses who have been pushing for Indonesia’s omnibus law. Image courtesy of Bersihkan Indonesia. Airlangga brought the omnibus bill to life last year by convening a 127-person committee, dominated by business leaders, to draft the legislation. Nine of the drafters were affiliated with…This article was originally published on Mongabay

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