Kupang, East Nusa Tenggara (ANTARA) - The Pertamax fuel (RON 92) price hike is inevitable because it is not subsidized, and the fluctuation of its prices is based on global oil prices, state-owned oil company Pertamina's official said in a statement that ANTARA received here Saturday.

"Pertamina always considers residents' purchasing power, and the new Pertamax fuel price remains economically competitive compared to similar fuel type offered by other oil companies," said Deden Mochamad Idhani, manager for communication and CSR at Pertamina's commercial and trading sub-holding company Pertamina Patra Niaga's East Java, Bali, and Nusa Tenggara Area.

The decision to increase the non-subsidized fuel prices this year was made for the first after the one in 2019, he said, adding that the price adjustment was only done to the non-subsidy fuel consumed by only 17 percent of total number of customers.

Some 14 percent of the non-subsidized fuel price consumers use Pertamax while another three percent of them use Pertamax Turbo, Dexlite, and Pertamina Dex, Idhani said.

He affirmed that the price of subsidised Pertalite and Solar diesel fuel, consumed by 83 per cent of residents, will have its price unchanged.

Idhani said that despite the price hike, the final price of the non-subsidized fuel remains below its economic price, as current geopolitical crises caused the global price of oil to surpass US$100 per barrel.

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To maintain the availability of fuel supplies and distributions, Pertamina carries out major operational efficiency that has inevitably triggered price hike, he added.

Idhani further expressed hope that residents would stick to using non-subsidised fuel that has higher quality.

"The new price remains affordable for financially-viable residents. We also urge residents to be more prudent by purchasing fuel only when needed," Idhani remarked.

Earlier, the Ministry of Energy and Mineral Resources' Head of Communication, Public Information Service, and Cooperation Bureau Agung Pribadi said that considering the global fuel price increase in March, the economic price of RON 92 fuel in April may reach Rp16 thousand (US$1.12) per litre.

The current Pertamax fuel price of Rp12,500 (US$0.875) remains below its economically-ideal price. "The decision (to maintain the price) is to not add further burden to residents," Pribadi remarked.

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Translator: Kornelis Kaha, Nabil Ihsan
Editor: Rahmad Nasution
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