Jakarta: The Indonesian Government plans to provide incentives for the country's coal downstream industries in a bid to boost competitiveness of those industries.
“The Government will provide many incentives so coal downstream industries can be more economical and more competitive,” said Minister of Energy and Mineral Resources Arifin Tasrif on Sunday, as quoted by the Cabinet Secretariat's website.
According to the Minister, coal downstream industries are the Government’s main target in the future, with one of projects being carried out is gasification of low-calorie coal into Dimethyl Ether (DME) that will be used to substitute liquefied petroleum gas (LPG).
If we can further develop this gasification project, Arifin added, the Government will significantly slash the number of LPG imports as DME products can be a substitute for LPG.
Moreover, LPG imports from year to year continue to increase due to the increasing demand for LPG at home, he said.
In the meantime, during a limited cabinet meeting recently, President Joko Widodo (Jokowi) said that Indonesia must shift from being an exporting country for raw materials, one of which is coal, to becoming an industrial country capable of processing raw materials into semi-finished and finished goods.
According to the President, Indonesia must focus on developing coal-derived industries, starting from upgrading industry, manufacture of coal briquettes, manufacture of coke, coal liquefaction, coal gasification, to the coal-water mixture.
The President added that there are several priorities that can be made to increase coal added values, including the coal gasification program or coal to dimethyl ether (DME).