The Jakarta Post
State-owned energy holding company Pertamina has confirmed reports that it is importing crude oil for the first time from the United States. The shipment of around 600,000 barrels of imported US light crude oil is scheduled to arrive on June 7.
Pertamina's vice president of strategic planning and business development, logistics supply chain and infrastructure, Hasto Wibodo, confirmed the report.
"Yes it's true. The deal was needed to fulfill our daily needs for light crude. And much of WTI [West Texas Intermediate] crude has been exported from US," he said in a text message on Wednesday, adding that the deal was won through a tender.
Hasto said Pertamina decided to import the light crude from the US because of its competitive price compared to other bids.
"We usually import light crude from the Australian market," he said.
Hasto also said the crude was shipped from the US on April 20, and that its final destination was Pertamina's Cilacap refinery.
In April 2018, the Donald Trump administration expressed disappointment over its high trade deficit with Indonesia and announced that it would review the Generalized System of Preferences (GSP) facility for Indonesia.
GSP is a trade preference program that offers import duty exemptions for products from developing countries to promote economic development in the beneficiary countries.
Trade Minister Enggartiasto Lukita said in late March that the US would maintain Indonesia's Generalized System of Preferences (GSP) facility on the condition that the country fulfilled its requirement to make consistent regulatory adjustments.
Indonesia’s 2017 trade surplus with the US was US$9.67 billion, up 9.89 percent from the $8.84 billion trade surplus in 2016. The country's trade surplus with the US grew from 2013 to 2017 at an annual rate of 8.47 percent. (bbn)