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Nearly 80 percent of Indonesians against fuel price hike: Survey

Jakarta Globe - June 24, 2013

According to a recent survey conducted by the Indonesian Survey Circle (LSI), nearly 80 percent of Indonesian citizens oppose the government's decision to increase the price of subsidized fuel.

The survey showed that 79.21 percent of Indonesians disagreed with the price hike, while 1.69 percent supported the measure and 19.1 percent didn't know whether they agreed with it or not. Twelve hundred respondents were polled, and the survey had a margin of error of 2.9 percent.

Adjie Alfaraby, a researcher with the LSI, said that 84.01 percent of villagers surveyed were against the price increase, while 75.75 of urbanites opposed the measure.

"This is normal. People who live in villages are more effected by the price hike since higher transportation tariffs cause staple food prices to skyrocket, " Adjie said as quoted by Republika.com.

On Friday, the government officially announced that the price of subsidized fuel would increase from Rp 4,500 ($0.46) per liter to Rp 6,500.

The survey also revealed that 81.20 percent of women were against the new fuel price, while 78.80 percent of men disapproved of it.

Meanwhile, 44 percent of respondents blamed President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono and the Democratic Party for the new cost of subsidized fuel.

"Although the president didn't make the announcement himself to maintain his image, he's still being blamed," Adjie said as quoted by Metrotvnews.com.

"Even though the government's coalition – minus the PKS [Prosperous Justice Party] – supported the measure, the public is upset with the Democratic Party."

Democratic Party politician Sutan Bhatoegana, however, thought the survey results were normal. "SBY is the president [of Indonesia] and the chairman of the Democratic Party, so it's normal if he's being blamed for the unpopular decision," Sutan said, referring to the president by his initials.