Our subsidies here (fuel) are not just big but huge
Jakarta (ANTARA) - President Joko Widodo (Jokowi) has called on the public to understand that fuel subsidies provided by the government are huge, worth Rp502 trillion (US$33.8 billion), equivalent to the cost of building a new capital city.

"Our subsidies here (fuel) are not just big but huge. It can be used to build the capital city because the figure reaches Rp502 trillion. We must understand this. How long can we survive with subsidies of this size?" the president stated at a meeting of the Indonesian Democratic Party of Struggle (PDI-P) here on Tuesday.

Jokowi drew attention to the current severity of global conditions, which have had an impact on various sectors, including the prices of fuel oil.

The head of state cited as an example that the price of Pertalite in Indonesia is still Rp7,650 (52 cents) per liter and Pertamax, Rp12,500 (84 cents) per liter. The prices are not the actual price, but they are subsidized prices, he added.

Meanwhile, Jokowi noted that in Singapore and Germany, the price of gasoline had reached Rp31 thousand (US$2.09) per liter, while in Thailand, it was Rp20 thousand (US$1.35) per liter.

"If we do not understand the numbers, we do not realize how serious the problem is. Some Rp466 trillion is needed to build the capital city, (while) this is for subsidies. It is impossible for us to not provide subsidies. It would be noise. We also make the socio-political calculation," Jokowi remarked.

President Jokowi emphasized that the people should receive information regarding the current difficult global conditions.

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Translator: Rangga PAJ, Fardah
Editor: Sri Haryati
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