In April 2018, President Joko Widodo unveiled a roadmap to drive Indonesia into the world’s top 10 largest economies by 2030. The roadmap is dubbed “Making Indonesia 4.0”, a reference to the fourth industrial revolution sweeping the world via innovations in digital technology, artificial intelligence and 3-D printing, among other areas. The plan is focused on spurring growth in five sectors of the Indonesian economy— food and beverages, textile & clothing, automotive, chemicals and electronics— and improving Indonesia’s global competitiveness and export potential.
The intent is noble, but it ignores the necessary foundation that would make it possible— a modernized, efficient and reliable electric system, one that is designed to accommodate a more sophisticated future supply and demand, rather than focusing only on adding more generation capacity. Improvements should be prioritized on the system design first. If Making Indonesia 4.0 is to become a reality, the government needs first to embark on an Energy 4.0 campaign, one that will enable the country’s electricity system to meet the digital needs of the new era affordably and reliably.
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