Indonesia’s restrictions on commodities rattle markets, more moves likely

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A worker displays nickel ore in a ferronickel smelter owned by state miner Aneka Tambang Tbk at Pomala district, Indonesia, March 30, 2011. REUTERS/Yusuf Ahmad

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Jan 28 (Reuters) – In just the first month of this year, Indonesian policymakers have rattled global markets with restrictions on some of its biggest commodities exports – and more such moves are in the works.

The resource-rich Southeast Asian nation banned coal exports for January, imposed restrictions on palm oil shipments by requiring mandatory domestic market obligations, and also floated the idea of an export tax on nickel pig iron – all within the opening weeks of 2022.

While tight domestic coal stocks and high local edible oil prices were cited by authorities as the main factors behind the announced moves, Indonesia has shown before that it is prepared to disrupt raw commodity exports in order to aid the development of its…

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