The republic paused coal exports in January to address shortage for domestic power
The republic’s mining regulator reportedly ordered through a letter to have coal miners and exporters to divert coal from loaded ships at ports to power plants to prevent disruption to the national electricity system.
The decreed was issued by Ridwan Djamaluddin, Indonesia’s Energy and Mineral Resources Ministry’s top man in regulating Indonesia’s mining industry. Its objective was to prevent shutdowns at about 20 power plants in Java, Madura, Bali and other regions. The lack of supply is estimated to impact 10 million residential and industry customers. A decision on when to resume exports might be out week of 10th January 2022.
Ridwan Djamaluddin, Director General of Minerals and Coal said in a statement, “When coal supply to power plants are fulfilled returns to normal, exports will resume. We will evaluate everything after 5 January 2022.” Out of 5.1 million tonnes of coal supply to power plants assigned by the government, only 35,000 tonnes or less than 1 per cent were delivered as of 1 January 2022.
The government has set a ceiling price for coal sold to local power plants at US$70 per tonne, while also requiring producers to supply at least 25 per cent of their output to the domestic market. Firms found to be violating the regulation could be prevented from exporting coal or fined. It was incriminating the republic indeed suffered an outage when extreme measures were taken by the government to ensure its domestic needs are addressed.
Indonesia estimates domestic coal production in 2022 of as much as 644 million tonnes, with domestic consumption forecast at 190 million. The last time Indonesia suffered a massive power outage was in 2019 where parts of the capital city, Jakarta went dark. Each blackout lasted between 6 – 9 hours, depending on the exact location. Djamaluddin’s order is a wise move for the country to avoid wrath from 10 million customers.
Marine Online News Team
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