The Indonesian Coal Mining Association (ICMA) frowns on and challenges the government plan to ban the low-grade coal export inferior to 5,100 kcal/kg, to be effective 2014. “ICMA disagrees over this.
"We oppose it and plead for its postponement,” said, ICMA’s Executive Director Suhala Supriatna.
The government is currently drawing up a regulation to ban the export of coal below 5,100 kcal/kg (adb). The implementation of the regulation is expected as of January 12, 2014, aiming that the coal with low-grade can be upgraded upfront prior to export.
According to Suhala, there is no demonstrably proven and reliable technology to upgrade low calorific value coal to higher-grade coal. Currently existing is negligible technology only as applied by a Japanese UBC at an Arutmin mine. Binderless Coal Briquetting plant (BCB Plant) constructed in Tabang mine, Indonesia, which is owned by PT Bayan Resources.
When the regulation is enforced, many low grade coal producers will face the problem.
Constructing coal upgrading technology is costly, requiring at least over US$75 million. That is why, it entails incentives, such as a reduction in coal royalty and taxes. “we have not yet proposed. How much will the royalty and taxes be,” Suhala said.
According to him, the regulation is being drafted by bureaucrats, but they don’t understood the business as this is a tough regulation to implement. He calls [the government’s attention] not to control and dictate investments.
He notes at least there will be four low-grade coal producers being affected as they are already in the production stage. Those four coal producers together might produce 5 million ton or more per annum.
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