UGM electricity observer, Prof. Dr. Tumiran, has reminded the government to conduct an energy use audit toward the State Owned Electricity Enterprise (PLN) in order to reduce production costs and basic electric rates. "During this time, there is no information about the use of energy by the PLN. An energy flow auditing should be initiated. So far, the audit carried out was only related to the flow of funds," Tumiran told reporters on Wednesday (16/6).
He viewed that before the audit, PLN energy usage was not yet efficient in a sense that the amount of energy intake and the output generated is unequal. If the energy audit is conducted, PLN might be able to reduce the production costs so that the government subsidy can be reduced, too. "In due course, the increase can be pushed in the basic electricity rates, so this won't burden the public too much," said the member of the National Energy Board.
Furthermore, he said that the Board already suggested the step to be taken, however, it will all depend on the government, Moreover, the government plans to reduce the subsidy for electricity which is draining the budget up to around 56 trillion rupiah per annum. Tumiran added, budget for subsidies can be saved if PLN conduct efficiency, especially in terms of energy usage.
Tumiran also suggested PLN to perform energy conversion. Not only fuel, but also the use of coal and gas needs to be encouraged further. "The government should rethink about the large scale gas exports, even though the policy had been issued because the government was bound by the old agreement," the Dean of Faculty of Engineering advised.
Tumiran believes that the use of gas is much cheaper than oil. Even with international prices, the cost of electricity production will be much cheaper.