ASEAN KEY DESTINATIONS
Indonesia to tax coal exports
The government will reimpose a duty on coal exports, classifying it as a good that has a negative impact instead of charging the commodity with excise, in hopes of boosting state revenue as well as securing domestic needs, according to an executive at the Indonesian Coal Mining Association (APBI).
Supriatna, the executive director of APBI, said on Sunday that the export duty would boost this year’s state revenue as Indonesia is expected to sell 76 percent of its coal output overseas, especially to Asia’s energy-demanding countries such as China, India, Japan and South Korea. APBI is projecting the nation’s coal production to reach 360 million tons this year, after output was 320 million tons in 2010.
Supriatna was optimistic that Indonesia, the world’s second-largest coal exporter after Australia, has strong bargaining power, and global consumers will buy coal even though the price may need to be adjusted if the additional tax takes effect. “Coal is primary energy, it is always needed,” Supriatna said on Sunday.
On Thursday, finance minister Agus Martowardojo set coal as one of 15 products – along with carbonated soft drinks; electric cigarettes; dyes, monosodium glutamate; and diamonds – that should be levied. Indonesia’s excise law says the government can impose excise, or a specific tax, on goods that have negative impact to humans or the environment.
Agung Kuswandono, director general of customs and excises at the finance ministry, said Tuesday that coal was charged as an excise object because of its potential to damage the environment from both its extraction and use. No other minerals have excise taxes.
Indonesia imposed a complex set of export taxes for crude palm oil, the rates of which vary with the international price, as producers seek to create added value to the commodity, apart from securing domestic demand.
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