PT Pertamina still experiencing losses despite increasing the price of Pertamax fuel from Rp 9,000 to Rp 12,500 per liter. The reason is that Pertamina buys crude oil at international market prices which touch US$ 103 per barrel.
President Director of PT Pertamina Patra Niaga, Alfian Nasution, said the difference between the purchase price of oil and the sale of fuel had an impact on Pertamina’s cash flow imbalance.
In addition to the high price of world crude oil, operational costs and taxes are also a consideration in determining the price of the new Pertamax. The increase in the price of Pertamax also needs to be balanced with the economic capacity and condition of the community.
“Considering that Pertamax is a type of general fuel that is not compensated or subsidized, this will be Pertamina’s risk,” said Alfian in the discussion. CNBC Energy Corner on Monday (4/4).
Since the increase in the price of Pertamax, there has been an increase in the use of Pertalite fuel by 15%. In order to attract consumers who migrated during this transition period, Pertamina offers a number of prizes and promotions through purchases from the My Pertamina Application. On the other hand, Alfian guarantees that Pertalite fuel will not be in short supply because Pertamina has stock for the next 19 days.
“We understand that there is a slight shift in consumption because people are surprised that the price of Pertamax has gone up. We also guarantee Pertalite stock is in a good position, we spend 15% above average consumption. Both at Pertamina and at gas stations, the stock is guaranteed,” said Alfian.
Furthermore, said Alfian, if world oil prices experience a steady and long-lasting downward trend, Pertamax fuel will have the potential to adjust prices. As for this, it still depends on world oil prices, production costs and economic prices.
“If later the price of crude oil and its production price will be below Rp 12,500 per liter, of course we will also correct the price of Pertamax down as well. Because this is a market mechanism that depends on the movement of world crude oil prices,” he said.
Energy and Mining Economics and Mining observer at Gadjah Mada University (UGM) Yogyakarta, Fahmy Radhi, said that the migration of consumers from Pertamax users to Pertalite was due to the price disparity which reached Rp 4,850 per liter.
Fahmy estimates that consumer migration will not occur on a large scale. “Migration is possible only for motorcyclists and public transport such as taxis online,” said Fahmi when contacted today.
In line with Alfian, Fahmi hopes that if in the future the world oil price experiences a stable and long-lasting decline, the government can reconsider the determination of the Pertamax price. “Because Pertamax is based on a market mechanism that is influenced by world oil prices,” he said.
The price increase for Pertamax needs to be addressed by increasing supervision over the distribution of Petrolite subsidized fuel. Deputy Chairman of Commission VII DPR, Eddy Soeparno, said this was an effort to prevent the migration of Pertamax consumers to Pertalite fuel.
According to him, such monitoring should be carried out at each gas station. SPBU officers are also expected to be selective in choosing potential consumers who are entitled to receive Pertalite subsidized fuel. Pertalite, which is actually made from 50% of the Premium type of fuel mixture, should be distributed to entitled consumers.
“Now this is a matter of supervision and it must be done at gas stations. Misappropriation is prone to occur at gas stations, in Jabodebatbek alone there are 700 gas stations, I think. Gas stations must be given an understanding that they are only allowed to sell Pertalite to those who fall into the category who are entitled to receive it,” said Eddy when contacted by telephone on Monday (4/4), afternoon.
Eddy also suggested the distribution of Pertalite with a direct scheme to the beneficiaries. He realized that this scheme needed to be prepared in advance because the data collection accuracy process took time. “We are talking about whether the subsidy (Pertalite) will be given in cash to the beneficiaries. So it’s only given to those who deserve it,” he said.