Jakarta. The growing number of electric cars in the country has fueled battery storage use and is projected to boost coal demand in the near future. A few number of countries, including Indonesia and Thailand, are currently developing energy storage technologies to support the use of electric cars.
Indonesia's second-biggest miner Adaro Indonesia, with Thai partner state-owned electricity company Electricity Generating Authority of Thailand (EGAT) International, held a meeting in Bangkok on Monday (18/12) to discuss further partnerships in coal initiatives.
Currently, Thailand is developing battery-powered storage to meet various demands, including those from electric vehicles and artificial intelligence, according to EGAT president director Watchara Hemruchatanum. A power storage battery can absorb available power, ranging from solar to coal.
"We still believe that the coal demand may rise further in the near future," said Adaro Energy president director Garibaldi "Boy" Thohir.
The projected coal demand is also in line with the government's target to reach 20 percent electric vehicle usage out of total cars on the road in Indonesia by 2025.
Last year, EGAT International, a wholly-owned unit of EGAT, purchased 11.53 percent of Adaro Indonesia's stake, a part of Adaro Energy, for $325 million (Rp 4.35 trillion). Adaro Indonesia operates coal mines in South Kalimantan, with 13.5 billion tons of coal reserves.
"Adaro and EGAT have a similar vision and mission business. Adaro management is also pleased with EGAT's capability," Boy said.
Through Adaro, EGAT imported a total of one million tons of coal from Indonesia over the past ten years. Adaro produced 52.5 million tons of coal last year. During the first nine months this year, the company produced 39.36 million tons of coal.
Domestic coal consumption accounting to 20 percent of its total production, with the remaining coal supply exported to China (14%), Malaysia (10%), Japan (10%), South Korea (10%), India (7%), Taiwan (6%), Spain (5%), Philippines (3% ) and Thailand.
As part of its effort to reduce dependency on coal, the company is currently developing power plants in partnership with a myriad of overseas corporations. The company has an ambitious plan to build 5,000-megawatt power plants in Southeast Asia.
Boy sees the opportunity to expand the company's coal business to a number of countries in the region, as a few of them still need greater electricity supplies, especially Vietnam and Myanmar.
Through its subsidiary Adaro Power, the company built a coal-fueled 2x30 megawatt power plant Makmur Sejahtera Wisesa (MSW) in Tanjung, South Kalimantan.
Adaro is also currently developing a $4.2 billion power plant in Batang, Central Java, with Japan's Electric Power Development (J Power) and Itochu Corporation. The joint venture, dubbed as Bhimasena Power Indonesia, is developing 2 x 1,000 megawatt power plants.
The company is also establishing a 200-megawatt power plant project with South Korean utility firm Korea East-West Power in Tabalong, South Kalimantan, through its joint-venture unit Tanjung Power Indonesia.
In the first nine months this year, Adaro Energy's revenue was recorded at $2.4 billion, up 37 percent compared to the same period last year.
The company's financial performance also has a positive effect on Adaro's stock performance. Adaro, traded under ADRO stock ticker, closed Rp 1,890 apiece with a market capitalization of Rp 60 trillion on Friday (22/12).