Antara, Jakarta – The government and relevant authorities must be firm in imposing sanctions against industrial actors who continue to use subsidized fuel despite being ineligible for utilizing it, a House of Representatives (DPR RI) lawmaker said.
"It has been reported that many palm transport and mining vehicles have continued using subsidized Solar diesel fuel despite their not being eligible (for using the fuel)," DPR RI Commission VII legislator Mulyanto said in a statement issued on Saturday.
Noting the scarcity of Solar diesel duel in some regions, the legislator urged state-owned oil company Pertamina and the Oil and Gas Downstream Regulatory Agency (BPH Migas) to coordinate with police in investigating the root causes of the shortage and implementing concrete actions to address the issue.
Several factors could be behind the increase in demand for diesel fuel, he said. The first factor could be the economic recovery, which has boosted industrial growth and demand for Solar diesel fuel.
Another factor could be the price disparity between subsidized and non-subsidized fuel, due to fluctuations in global oil prices, which have tempted industry actors to use subsidized diesel fuel, he added.
"We could also suspect that some parties, including the industry sector, deviated from regulations by using subsidized Solar diesel fuel despite their ineligibility," Mulyanto said.
The high price disparity between subsidized and non-subsidized diesel fuel prices, currently at Rp7,800 (US$0.54) per liter, has tempted some actors to shift to subsidized fuel, which is harmful to residents, he added.
Earlier, President Director of Pertamina Nicke Widyawati had said that according to the law, coal transport vehicles are prohibited from using subsidized diesel fuel.
"Coal transport trucks are used by major industries that are not receiving subsidized Solar diesel fuel from the government, nor they are (allowed to) using subsidized fuel," Widyawati said during a working visit to Jambi on Saturday (April 2, 2022).
She confirmed that Pertamina will reconsider existing policies to enact new business schemes to ensure compatibility with relevant laws and actual regulation enforcement.
Moreover, the National Association of Oil and Gas Entrepreneurs Executive Board (DPP Hiswana Migas) urged its regional branch and organization members in the petrol station business to ensure the proper distribution of subsidized Solar diesel fuel.
DPP Hiswana Migas head Rachmad Muhammadiyah, in a statement issued on March 30, said that petrol stations can log the plate number of vehicles purchasing subsidized fuel distributed under Pertamina's Public Service Obligation (PSO) scheme.
"Regarding long queues for Solar diesel fuel at petrol stations, we urge petrol station owners to observe the consumer and vehicle categories and the maximum purchase volume, and log the plate number of vehicles that purchase the PSO product," Muhammadiyah added.