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Economy in Brief: Coal Association Seeks Bigger Role in RI

The Indonesian Coal Mining Association (APBI) is seeking a bigger role in the rule-making process for the country’s coal industry, a new chief has said.

The newly elected chairman of the association, Pandu Sjahrir, said coal utilization, incentives, slowing investment and royalty payments would be key issues that the association would address in the near future.

“The important KPI [key performance indicator] for us is how to increase the investment in the mining industry instead of increasing production. In the last few years, capital expenditure in mining has been declining not only due to plunging prices but also due to unfriendly policies that increased costs,” Pandu said.

He cited that during the 2011 to 2014 period, the capital expenditure disbursed by mining firms declined by about 70 percent, which was partly driven by higher royalties and bigger payments needed for the use of forest areas.

Pandu, the president director of Jakarta-listed PT Toba Bara Sejahtra — a subsidiary of PT Toba Sejahtra founded by current presidential chief of staff Luhut Panjaitan — was elected as APBI chairman in a Wednesday meeting. He replaces previous chairman Bob Kamandanu.