JAKARTA, Jan. 2 (Xinhua) — Indonesia’s Ministry of Transportation has temporarily closed all cargo services of exported coal, following the government’s decision to ban January’s exports of the commodity due to concerns over low supplies for domestic power plants.
“No coal export cargo services are allowed from the period of Jan. 1 to Jan. 31, 2022,” said Arif Toha, the ministry’s acting director general for sea transportation on Sunday in a press release.
The temporary closure was addressed to all national marine transportation companies and national ship agencies for compliance.
Following the regulation, all harbor offices, Main Port Authority offices, Special Port Authority offices as well as Port Management Unit offices in the country are not allowed to issue any sailing approval letter to all coal exporters.
Indonesia has prohibited coal exports for the January period after projecting that low coal supplies for domestic power plants could lead to widespread blackouts. The ban was announced on Friday by the country’s Ministry of Energy and Mineral Resources.
The ban was imposed after coal miners failed to meet the so-called Domestic Market Obligation published in 2018, under which they are obliged to supply at least 25 percent of a mine’s approved production plan at a maximum sales price of 70 U.S. dollars per metric ton, or below the global benchmark price.
The Southeast Asian country is currently the world’s biggest exporter of coal for electricity generation.
According to the Handbook of Energy and Economic Statistics of Indonesia 2020, it exported around 400 million tons of thermal coal in 2020, and its biggest customers were China, India, Japan and South Korea.