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Up close: Grievance management mechanism in Indonesia

ExxonMobil has a long history in Indonesia – Socony, a Mobil predecessor, opened a marketing office in Java in 1898, and Esso entered Indonesia in 1912. Initial oil production from the Banyu Urip field began in 2008. Construction activities for the project, which produces oil onshore and transports it by pipeline for deliveries from an offshore floating storage and offloading vessel, started in December 2011. As of 2015, the project was completed and currently the field has reached a production capacity of 185,000 barrels per day – delivering over 20 percent of Indonesia’s annual oil production target.

Banyu Urip is located in the densely populated area of Bojonegoro, on the eastern part of the island of Java. Over the past several years, we have actively worked with local communities in the project area to address some inherent challenges they face. There is a high unemployment rate among community members of working age, and the communities have had increasingly high expectations related to job and business opportunities and community support programs throughout the progression of the Banyu Urip project. Land ownership disputes have also been a particular challenge.

We approached the challenge proactively by forming a socioeconomic team that included specialized disciplines, as well as field personnel ready to develop close relationships with community stakeholders. In 2012, the project established a Grievance Management Procedure with a commitment to resolve outstanding grievances and ensure concerns are addressed in a timely manner through open dialogue with the community. By the end of 2014, all but 14 of the 424 total received grievances had been resolved.

Photo — We conduct town hall meetings to listen to community concerns and foster close relationships with local stakeholders.