Indonesian president Widodo visits VinFast factory

By Le Tan   January 13, 2024 | 02:54 am PT
Indonesian president Widodo visits VinFast factory
Indonesian President Joko Widodo sits in a VF9 car at a VinFast factory in Hai Phong, with the presence of VinFast CEO Pham Nhat Vuong (R) and his son Pham Nhat Quan Anh, Jan. 13, 2023. Photo by VnExpress/Giang Huy
Indonesia's President Joko Widodo said he supports VinFast automotive projects in Indonesia during a visit to the Vietnamese company's car factory in Hai Phong on Saturday.

Widodo said he was happy to visit the manufacturer despite the long distance and unfavorable weather conditions.

"I support the projects that VinFast would [launch] in Indonesia, and will instruct my subordinates to give them approvals as soon as possible," Widodo told Pham Nhat Vuong, chairman of Vingroup, Vinfast's parent company. Vuong, Vietnam’s richest man, has taken over as CEO of VinFast earlier this month, swapping his position with Le Thi Thu Thuy, who will become chairwoman.

During the Saturday visit, Widodo sat in the driver's seat of a VF9 car and checked out the details of VF5, VF7 and VF9 cars. Pham Nhat Quan Anh, Vuong's son, introduced Widodo to the car's functions.

VinFast is expected to invest at least $1.2 billion in Indonesia over time.

Besides distributing car models imported from Vietnam in the first phase, VinFast would also invest $200 million to build an electric car factory, with a production capacity of 30,000-50,000 cars a year, in Indonesia.

VinFast and GSM also signed memorandums of cooperation with Indonesia's tech firm PT GoTo Gojek Tokopedia Tbk to promote green transportation in Indonesia. Gojek's drivers would be aided in switching to electric vehicles, and Indonesians may also experience VinFast's Xanh SM ride-hailing service.

VinFast and GSM said they would like to contribute to the reduction in traffic emissions, a goal that the Indonesian government is also pursuing. Their agreement is also a chance for cooperation and a new step for an expansion into the global market this year.

Following his visit to the VinFast factory, Widodo completed his state visit to Vietnam from Thursday to Saturday.

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