The Jakarta Post, Bandung
As part of its business expansion, PT United Tractors (UT), a subsidiary of PT Astra International focusing on heavy machinery supplier, has developed its barging industry in Kalimantan through its subsidiary company PT Patria Maritime Lines.
UT's director Edhie Sarwono said Friday that barging business was very prospective in Kalimantan as coal miners needed to transport the commodity to the nearest seaport.
"Most of our clients in Kalimantan are coal miners, like PT Pamapersada Nusantara which is also a subsidiary of Astra International. So, we provide our clients a more comprehensive solution by offering barge to transport their coal as well as machinery supplies from UT," he told a seminar in Bandung, West Java.
UT has also started operating a coal mining through subsidiary PT Tuah Turangga Agung in Kapuas, Central Kalimantan.
Infrastructure development on the 5,000-hectare mine site is nearing completion, with production expected to start soon.
"Once it starts producing, Patria Maritime Lines is ready to barge the coal," Edhie said.
With UT's initial investment worth US$4 million, Patria Maritime Lines began its operation last month with only one barge available. The barge can carry up to 8,000 tons of coal in a single trip.
The company aims to operate six barges by the end of 2009 and buy 10 more barges in 2010 and three in 2011, allowing it to carry up to seven million tons of coal a year. (bbs)