Jakarta. Indonesia is expected to nearly double domestic consumption of thermal coal over the next eight years to help meet annual growth in electricity demand of around 8.4 percent, the state power company said on Friday.
Electricity demand growth in Southeast Asia’s largest economy has outpaced the rise in generating capacity, resulting in frequent blackouts in cities and leaving many rural areas without access to regular power supply.
The government and state utility Perusahaan Listrik Negara (PLN) are racing to catch up with 60 gigawatts of new power plants in the pipeline, with plans for coal to fuel a greater portion of electrical supply than other sources.
The increase in Indonesia’s domestic thermal coal demand is a result of a push to meet the country’s ballooning energy needs with a plentiful resource that is cheaper than other fuels, PLN coal business director Helmi Najamuddin told Reuters on the sidelines of an industry conference.