State-owned plantation firms have jointly set up a consortium for the construction of a biodiesel plant aimed at supporting the government program to develop alternative energy resources, The Jakarta Post reported Tuesday (5/2/08).
The state firms involved include PT Perkebunan Nusantara (PTPN) III, PTPN IV, PTPN V and PTPN VII. PTPN III will act as the head party in the consortium.
PTPN VII president director Andi Punoko said the firms grouped in the consortium had recently signed a memorandum of understanding for the development of the biodiesel plant, which was expected to begin soon.
"The plant will be built in Medan, North Sumatra, near the source of raw material. We expect the construction to finish in 2009," Andi said, refusing to disclose the investment sum needed to set up the plant.
Andi said that the use of biodiesel would account for 10% of the firm's total production costs which reached between Rp30 billion ($3.22 million) and Rp40 billion per year.
The four state firms engage in the cultivation of palm oil and rubber, as well as producing crude palm oil, palm kernels, latex, crumb rubber and rubber smoked sheet.