JAKARTA, April 21 (Reuters) - Indonesia’s vice minister for energy and minerals, a key policy maker in the government’s drive to tighten mining regulations, died on Saturday in a mountaineering accident, said a senior government official.
Widjajono Partowidagdo was a central player in a government decision expected soon on whether to impose a 25 percent tax on mining exports this year and a 50 percent tax in 2013.
He was climbing Mount Tambora on Sumbawa island in eastern Indonesia when the incident happened on Saturday, a senior government official said.
“It’s confirmed that the vice minister has passed away,” Thamrin Sihite, a director general in the ministry told Reuters.
A series of mining and minerals regulations announced this year have rattled investors in the country, which is the world’s top exporter of thermal coal and refined tin and has a big minerals sector.
The regulations include a plan under which some foreign mining companies must divest 51 percent within 10 years and a proposed ban on the export of some unprocessed metals by 2014.