Sometimes, there are benefits to being late to the game. Vietnam, for example, had some of the fastest internet in the world when broadband was just about becoming an international standard. They achieved this simply by not having much of a phone or internet network to begin with, which meant that they weren't tied up trying to make use of hefty investments from previous years. All of the money to invest could be used to build the most modern network available for the time.
Now, you might be thinking this has some relevance with Indonesia's automotive industry, but you'd be dead wrong. Indonesia's total industry volume for 2018 stood at 1.1 million units moved, compared to ours at just half. Then again, with a population close to nine times the size of our population, that figure doesn't seem all too high - but we digress. Indonesia's automotive industry has seen its ups and downs for local manufacturing, but it seems that they are hungry for a piece of the future.
According to Bloomberg, Indonesia is looking for Renault and Volvo to invest in electric vehicle assembly plants locally. Part of this is due to a local goal to have a quarter of all new cars sold in Indonesia being electric vehicles by 2030, but the other larger benefit to this is that it would make Indonesia a hub for electric vehicle production in the region. The cost of an electric vehicle plant is extremely high as the technologies are still in their nascent stages, which makes it all the more likely for a company to invest in a singular production facility for the region.
The deal is sweetened with projections of 3 million cars sold annually by 2030, which would put electric vehicle sales alone in the region of 750,000 units. That being said, we predict a general slowdown in new car sales as the more disruptive technologies enter the market and consumers are less inclined to own a car, but we will have to wait and see how the market changes in the coming decade or so.
But one of Indonesia's prime advantages is its natural resource of nickel ore, which some Chinese manufacturers have taken advantage of by starting up a battery plant in the country. This would ideally make the country look more feasible to a company looking to set up an electric car shop in ASEAN, and both Hyundai and Volkswagen have already expressed a level of interest in the idea.