Coal power industry in Indonesia - statistics & facts

The electricity generation capacity in Indonesia reached about 63 gigawatts in 2018. For a dynamic, emerging country, this capacity would not be sufficient for long and additional capacities must be created quickly. According to forecasts by the Indonesian Ministry of Energy and Mineral Resources, electricity consumption will increase from the current 270 terawatt hours to over 500 terawatt hours by 2027.

Indonesia had been relying largely on coal and gas to meet its electricity demands. Both raw materials are available in great quantities, are dispatchable, and the corresponding power plants can be built cheaply. Furthermore, coal in particular can be used to promote Indonesia's export business and support remote areas in their economic development. Coal mining has therefore been a cornerstone of politics and a likely target for government interventions. In 2019, coal mines were obliged to sell 25 percent of the production volume on the domestic market and the state-owned electricity supplier PLN received a maximum price of 70 U.S. dollars per ton of coal purchased.

Not surprisingly, coal producers can expect a flourishing market in the next few years. Coal production has already increased over the past decade and as long as the world market price does not sink, further growth is very likely. Currently, about 70 to 75 percent of Indonesia’s coal production is exported abroad. The main export countries include China, India, Japan and South Korea. In 2017, about one third of the global coal exports was exported from Indonesia, making it the largest coal exporting country in world. However, the Indonesian energy program could turn the industry into an internal market. For that reason, and to achieve independence from the global market, several large Indonesian mining companies have expanded directly into the energy sector in order to become an integrated energy company that uses its own coal.

On the other hand, the production of coal and especially electricity generation from coal does have an impact on the environment. Back in 2016, it was estimated that the emissions of carbon dioxide amounted to 4.6 billion metric tons in Southeast Asia. Taking current developments in Indonesia and other countries into account, not less, but more is to be expected.

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Coal industry in Indonesia

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