Jakarta (ANTARA) - The benefits of converting fossil fuel-based motorcycles to electric ones need to be promoted in a big way so that the general public becomes aware of them, Energy and Mineral Resources Minister Arifin Tasrif said.

"We need to undertake huge promotion so that people will be aware of its benefits," he underlined at the ministry's office on Friday.

He said that the conversion, which aims to develop the electric vehicle ecosystem, must be supported by other infrastructures and industries.

"Our infrastructure must be ready, and then our supporting industries must also be ready, our supply chain must be ready. This, we ask for help, too. Can media help (in promoting the conversion)?" he added.

According to Tasrif, if the conversion program is kicked off earlier, everyone can gain more benefits from the initiative.

On April 4, 2023, the government officially rolled out subsidies to promote electric motorcycle conversion. The conversion is part of an initiative launched to meet the mandate of Presidential Regulation Number 5 of 2020.

The program is a reflection of the government's commitment to slashing emissions by 31.8 percent by 2030, reducing oil imports and government compensation, as well as saving people's money so that they do not have to spend heavily on fuel.

“The government expects that the benefits of this conversion can be tangible for everybody, such as motorcycle owners, with the calculation of Pertalite last month at Rp27.7 million per year (US$1841.05). And then, in terms of savings on Pertalite spending from the government, it is as much as Rp18.6 billion (US$1.3 million), if we convert it, it amounts to 50 thousand units," the Director General of New Renewable Energy and Energy Conservation at the ministry, Dadan Kusdiana, informed.

To build the electric vehicle ecosystem, the government has issued two incentive schemes, one being an electric vehicle purchase incentive, as listed in the Finance Ministry's Regulation Number 38 of 2023 and the Energy and Mineral Resources Ministry's Regulation Number 3 of 2023.

The latter regulation states that 50 thousand converted bikes will be covered by the government's incentive scheme in 2023, and the following year, there will be 150 thousand more bikes that will be added to the scheme. For each bike conversion, an incentive of Rp7 million (US$ 477) will be provided.

It further states that the conversion program will push up electricity consumption to as much as 15 GWh, reduce emissions by 30 thousand tons, and reduce fuel imports by 20 thousand kiloliters, all of which could save US$10 million in foreign exchange.

Moreover, it will generate new jobs as there will be new and existing garages or workshops that will offer conversion services, and supporting industries will also produce components for the conversion.

The government will provide the conversion incentive to people through the ministry. The incentive will be offered through verified garages or workshops.

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Translator: Benardy Ferdiansyah
Editor: Sri Haryati
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