Jakarta. Two Indonesian state-owned companies have agreed with the United Emirates Arab's military contractor Edge Group to explore cooperation in explosive manufacturing and shipbuilding, paving the way for greater military self-reliance for the Southeast Asian country.
Explosive producer Dahana signed on Saturday a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with Edge's ammunition maker subsidiary Lahab to seek cooperation in manufacturing and several types of explosives. The deal was inked during the Indo Defence Expo & Forum 2022, a three-day international exhibition that runs through Nov 5 at JIExpo Kemayoran in Jakarta.
The companies said in a statement that the deal would pave the way for a TNT plant joint venture at the Dahana Energetic Material Center (EMC) area in Subang, West Java.
Lahab and Dahan also examined the possibility of collaborating on propellant and high-explosive RDX manufacturing. Currently, Indonesia still imports propellant and RDX, making the country vulnerable to international embargoes.
Arafat Al Yafei, Lahab's chief executive officer (CEO), said the deal would allow the companies to combine their capabilities and grow together and offer better services and solutions to their respective "customers in both the defense and commercial sectors while minimizing potential disruption."
Suhendra Yusuf RPN, Dahana's director of technology and development, said the deal was a follow-up to an earlier agreement between Edge and Dahana's parent company Defend ID, a holding for state-owned military industry, last year.
"As part of Defend ID, which serves to realize the independence of the national defense and security equipment tool, Alpalhankam, and to be a player in the global defense industry supply chain, Dahana seeks to establish strategic cooperation with Lahab and the wider Edge Group. We hope that this MoU can be followed up and realized to increase the capability and capacity of each company," Suhendra said.
Earlier on Thursday, shipbuilder PAL Indonesia had signed a memorandum of understanding with Edge's subsidiary Abu Dhabi Ship Building (ADSB) to build a range of interceptors, landing craft, and rigid-hull inflatable boats (RHIBs) for Indonesia's naval and coast guard requirements.
CEO of ADSB David Massey said the deal with PAL Indonesia would strengthen the UAE's investment in Indonesia.
"We are very pleased to be working with PT PAL, and we look forward to jointly pursuing opportunities that will help to achieve our respective business and national objectives," Massey said.
Azharuddin Djenod, PAL Indonesia's CEO, said he was pleased with the deal and hoped it would lead to a more robust Indonesian naval and defense industry.
"This collaboration will strengthen PT PAL's role in mastering naval technology in Indonesia," Kaharuddin said.