Thu, 01 Jul 2010

Jakarta (ANTARA News) - The government will issue energy and mineral resources decree No 7 of 2010 dated June 30, 2010, on new power rates.

Minister of Energy and Mineral Resources Darwin Saleh said in Jakarta on Wednesday that the decree will serve as a legal umbrella in the introduction of an average of 10 percent raise in power rates starting on July 1, 2010.

"The power rates (TDL) hike by an average of 10 percent is carried in energy and mineral resources ministrial decree no 7 of 2010 on power rates provided by state power company PT PLN," he said.

The ministerial decree is based on Law No 47 of 2009 on the 2010 State Budget, revised in Law No 2 of 2010 on the revised 2010 State Budget on subsidized electricity of Rp55.1 trillion.

The TDL hike had also considered the approval of the House Commission VII in the hearing with the Energy and Mineral Resources Minister of June 15, 2010.

With approval of the House Commission VII, the TDL hike did not include customers including business companies with a capacity of 450 volt ampere (VA), 900 VA and 6,600 VA and higher.

The Ministerial Decree No 7 replaces Presidential Decree No 104 of 2003 on PLN's TDL.

Darwin said the new TDL was raised under the ministerial decree based on Law no 30 of 2009 on Electricity.

"Whereas under the previous Law, PLN was still holder of electricity business, so that the rates are fixed by presidential decree," he said.

He also said that energy and mineral resources ministrial decree No 7 of 2010 was about PLN's obligation to meet the set criterion of service quality.

PLN's Business and Management Risk Director Murtaqi Syamsuddin added that the service quality criterion covers duration and frequency of a power disruption, mistakes in power meeting readings, speed in power connection, and speed and effectiveness in dealing with power disruptions.

Murtaqi also said PLN by way of its branch offices will familiarize its customers on service quality criteria.

Darwin also said that with the TDL hikes, the government asked PLN to increase its efficiency by way of improvements in energy combinations by replacing fuel oil with gas, coal and water, reducing network depreciation, and increasing new connections especially for low-cost houses.

Murtaqi said with the 10 percent TDL hike, PLN would be able to increase its new power connections from 1.1 million to 1.3-1.4 million, or to 200,000-300,000.

Darwin also said that the government will monitor the impact of the TDL hike by making an evaluation in every three to six months, by a team of members of the Electricity and Energy Utilization Directorate General, expert staff members of the energy and mineral resources minister and PLN. (*)