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Petrol Price Triggers Dispute
TEMPO/Pius Erlangga
Monday, 13 February, 2017 | 17:34 WIB
Petrol Price Triggers Dispute

TEMPO.CO, Jakarta - Chairman of the Regional Executive Board of the National Entrepreneurs Association of Oil and Gas, commonly known as Hiswana Migas, Juan Tarigan, stated that a number of Pertamina refueling station owners have increased the number of Pertalite fuel dispensers by replacing their Premium fuel dispensers. "The number of Pertalite users continues to grow," Juan said on February 9, 2017.

Refueling station owners prefer to sell Pertalite over Premium since the amount of profit they can obtain by selling the 90 octane fuel is quite significant. The number of Pertalite users have grown 4,487 percent up to August 2016 compared to its launch back in July 2015. This is why Pertalite can now be found in 3,358 refueling stations today, compared to the previous 103 refueling stations.

This increase of Pertalite consumers has already been predicted by a Pertamina consultant. Juan stated, quoting the consultant, that the migration of Premium users to Pertalite can reach more than 50 percent if the difference in its price is less than Rp 500. The price deviation was constant nearly throughout 2016, which is what caused the sudden spike in Pertalite users. 

Pertamina increased the price of Pertalite and Pertamax in the midst of a consumer increase, causing considerable price difference between Premium and Pertalite, with the latter priced Rp 800 per liter higher. This price deviation caused the consumers to switch back to Premium, resulting in overwhelming demands experienced by several refueling stations that have converted their Premium fuel dispensers to Pertalite.

An Official of Pertamina revealed that the plan to increase the price of Pertalite was never mentioned at the company's board meeting. "The President Director wasn't involved," the official said.

An Official at the Ministry of Energy and Mineral  Resources claimed that the dispute inside Pertamina's board of directors was caused by the procurement of Pertalite that lacked transparency. A senior employee of Pertamina confirmed the inconspicuous process of the Pertalite procurement.



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