Mon, 17 Mar 2008
Pekanbaru, Riau (ANTARA) - Industry Minister Fahmi Idris has thrown his weight behind a proposal to raise further the prices of fuel for industries to anticipate the greater impact of global crude price spiral.

"We have no other choice," he said here Saturday.

The minister was responding to state oil and gas company Pertamina`s wish to raise again the prices of fuel for industries amid a steady increase in global crude prices.

Raising the prices of fuel for industries was inevitable to avoid the greater impact of the global crude price spiral, he said.

On the other hand, the government was resolved not to raise the prices of subsidized fuel even if the state budget was under pressure due to the soaring global oil prices, he said.

"If (the prices of fuel for industries) are not raised, Pertamina, oil subsidy and so on will be affected," he said.

He said raising the prices of fuel for industries would not be a popular decision among entrepreneurs because this would raise production costs and stagnate the industrial sector. The more so because Pertamina raised the prices of fuel for industries by a range of 3.9 percent to 6.7 percent on January 15.

"Of course, (the increase) will have an impact on industries. But the matter also applies to the rest of the world due to the global crude prices," he said. (*)



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