Monday, May 21, 2012: 08:00:00 AM

International News

Indonesia Plans to Curtail Export of Minerals

Indonesia, a major exporter of mineral commodities, is reworking on the rules to stem over exploitation of the natural resources and their export.

The government has applied a 20% export tax on 14 mineral commodities, namely antimony, bauxite, chromium, copper, gold, iron ore, iron sand, lead, manganese, molybdenum, nickel, platinum, silver and tin.

While energy and mineral resources ministry's coal director, Edi Prasodjo, said new regulations on coal mining and trading were currently under discussion, energy and mineral resources minister Jero Wacik said the government will also issue regulations to control coal production and trading.

According to Mr Edi, the increasing pace of coal production was indeed worrisome. The situation was made worse by the fact that most of the production was exported because domestic consumption was still very low, he added.

"I predict, next year, our production will hit 450 million tonnes," Mr Edi said.

In the first quarter, Indonesia's coal production hit 108 million tonnes. Last year, the production was 370 million tones, according to industry data.

Coal miners have suggested that the government apply a production quota instead of implementing an export tax in order to prevent over-exploitation.

The government has also issued a regulation limiting foreign ownership of mines to only 49%. The regulation will apply to mining permits, including for coal, issued after the regulation was approved on February 21, 2012.


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