MARKETS

Indonesia's coal export squeeze continues

INDONESIAN coal exports - with new figures revealing they fell nearly 18% year-on-year in the first half of 2015 - are expected to be subject to a new tax from next month.

Blair Price
Indonesia's coal export squeeze continues

According to Bisnis Indonesia Indonesia’s Energy and Mineral Resources Ministry coal business director Adhi Wibowo said first half production was down 17.9% YoY to 245.6 million tonnes.

A further fall is expected in the second half with Wibowo confirming that the government’s total 2015 export target of 425Mt remained – which would mean a second half result of 179.4Mt if this level was achieved.

A new tax on Indonesian thermal coal exports could help in this regard with Platts’ sources last week revealing that such a levy could be implemented next month.

“The government has proposed a 1.5% tax on the export value of the coal, sources said,” the commodity research house reported.

“The new tax would be levied on IUP holders – or Izin Usaha Pertambangan which means individual holders of mining licences – to bridge the gap between the tax paid by IUP holders and those companies holding another type of mining licence called Coal Contract of Works or CCoW, said Supriatna Suhala, executive director of Indonesian Coal Mining Association.”

In May, Macquarie Wealth Management credited most global output cuts of thermal coal this year to Indonesia’s small to medium sized exporters.

“One must remember that the majority of Indonesian mining costs are US dollar-denominated and hence their competitive position has deteriorated over the past nine months,” Macquarie said at the time.

“On top of that, when looking at ease of supply cutting globally, Indonesian producers are, notwithstanding the fact that many are highly indebted, probably top of the list because they aren’t as burdened by infrastructure and other labour-force related liabilities.”

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