Jakarta (ANTARA) - Coordinating Minister for Maritime Affairs and Investment, Luhut Binsar Pandjaitan, has said that the government is planning to restrict the exports of liquefied natural gas (LNG) to boost domestic industrial development.

At the launch of the Indonesia Carbon Capture and Storage Center (ICCSC) here on Tuesday, he pointed out that the export restriction plan aims to cater to the increasing domestic demand for the commodity.

"We have exported LNG for years and found ourselves in urgent need of it now. A study then was conducted by Deputy I, ( the ministry's deputy for maritime and energy sovereignty coordination department; and we concluded that) there will be no more exports," Pandjaitan said.

A report on LNG exports has been compiled for the President, he added.

Despite the proposed restriction, LNG exports performed under contracts would continue as usual, the coordinating minister said.

He noted that the government intends to divert the gas exports to fulfill domestic needs, particularly for methanol and petrochemical industries, where the demand for such commodities remains high.

Pandjaitan also said that Indonesia is still importing petrochemical commodities until now, and the ongoing development of a petrochemical industry in North Kalimantan is expected to reduce the imports.

"We need gas, but our own gas will suffice, and we will no longer need to import it again," he added.

The domestic use of gas is expected to reduce the price of industry gas, which currently stands at US$6 per MMBtu, he said, adding that the price could be made lower by improving efficiency at gas wells.

"Ladies and gentlemen, cost-effectiveness, efficiency is the bottom line, and we should develop this in our country," Pandjaitan said.

The coordinating minister also asked the younger generation to work with their conscience and realize concrete actions to develop the country.

Indonesia is one of the major LNG-exporting countries, and in 2021, it became the eighth-largest exporter by recording 14.6 billion cubic meters of LNG exports.

Indonesia's LNG export destinations include China, South Korea, Japan, Taiwan, Singapore, and Mexico.

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Translator: Ade Irma Junida, Nabil Ihsan
Editor: Tia Mutiasari
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