President Jokowi: Coal Gasification Reduces LPG Import, Boosts Job Opportunities

By Office of Assistant to Deputy Cabinet Secretary for State Documents & Translation     Date 24 Januari 2022
Category: News
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Minister of Investment/Head of the Investment Coordinating Board Bahlil Lahadalia delivers report on the groundbreaking ceremony of downstreaming of coal to DME in Muara Enim regency, South Sumatra province, Monday (01/24). (Photo by: BPMI of Presidential Secretariat/Laily Rachev)

President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo, Monday (01/24), laid the first stone of the coal to dimethyl ether (DME)  downstreaming project in Tanjung Enim industrial area, Muara Enim regency, South Sumatra province.

According to the President, coal gasification not only reduces LPG import but also boosts job opportunities.

“We can improve our trade balance because we do not import. We can improve our current account balance because we do not import,” he said in his remarks.

Meanwhile, Minister of Investment/Head of the Investment Coordinating Board Bahlil Lahadalia reported that on average, Indonesia imports six to seven million metric tons of LPG in a year and with gasification, the country can save approximately Rp6-7 trillion for each ton.

“The output of gasification is to reduce our import. Based on our calculation, for every 1 million ton of downstreaming, we can save approximately Rp6-7 trillion. That is the efficiency of subsidy,” Bahlil said.

The downstreaming project is a cooperation of state-owned coal mining company PT Bukit Asam (PTBA), state-owned oil and natural gas company PT Pertamina, and American investor Air Products.

According to Bahlil, the investment will create many jobs, starting from the construction stage up to the operational stage.

“This job will create 12,000-13,000 jobs from the construction carried out by Air Products. Then approximately 11,000-12,000 from the downstreaming by Pertamina. Once production begins, there will be 3,000 available steady jobs. Those are direct employments. As for indirect employments, the contractors, subcontractors, there is multiplier effect, there can be 3-4 times more employments,” he said.

Bahlil added that the project with an investment value of Rp33 trillion will be carried out in 30 months.

“This investment is fully made by [the United States of] America, not [South] Korea, not Japan, not China. Let me also inform you that it is not true that the country only focuses on obtaining investment from one country,” he said.

Closing his report, Bahlil underscored that coal downstreaming in Muara Enim will prioritize domestic workers.

“I have called Air Products. Ninety-five percent of the workers will be Indonesians. The 5 percent is only for the construction stage. The production stage will involve PTBA and PT Pertamina,” he remarked. (FID/UN) (DH/MMB)

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