Putin offers to finance railway project in new Indonesian capital

President Vladimir Putin offered to have Russian Railways invest in Indonesia’s new capital, in a sign of warming ties with Southeast Asia’s biggest economy as the US and its allies seek to isolate Moscow.

Putin said Moscow could take part in President Joko Widodo’s plan to move Indonesia’s capital to the island of Kalimantan from Jakarta, according to a statement by the Russian Embassy in the country. He made the comments during Jokowi’s visit to Moscow on Thursday, it said.

Nusantara, as the new capital will be called, is set to begin construction in August after the pandemic stalled its development. Jokowi has courted investors, including Abu Dhabi and Taiwan’s Foxconn Technology Group to help build a renewable energy-powered city from scratch.

Russian energy companies are also keen to operate in Indonesia, especially in developing nuclear power, Putin added. Atomic energy is a key part of Indonesia’s net-zero emissions plan.

Indonesia has come under pressure by the US and other countries to prevent Putin from joining the Group of 20 summit, which is set to take place in Bali. The Russian leader made no comment on whether he’ll attend in person.

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