Jakarta. Indonesia plans to stop importing jet fuel and diesel starting next month in order to reign in its current account deficit, a senior minister said last week.
"Starting next month, we will not import oil and gas products, including jet fuel and diesel. We want to use our own, produced and processed here," Coordinating Minister for Economic Affairs Darmin Nasution said on Friday, as quoted by Antara.
Darmin said oil and gas imports make up a lion's share of the deficit, with the oil and gas balance being $2 billion in the red.
"[State energy company] Pertamina processes enough crude oil into jet fuel and diesel fuel for domestic consumption," he said.
Darmin said the move to stop importing oil and gas products will be complemented by efforts to increase non-oil and gas exports.
"This [stopping import] will help the current account, in addition to encouraging more exports. It's okay if the current account balance deteriorated slightly in the first quarter. It will improve in the next quarter," Darmin said.
Indonesia's current account deficit narrowed to $7 billion or 2.6 percent of the gross domestic product in the first quarter last year, down from $9.2 billion or 3.6 percent of GDP in the same period a year ago, data from Bank Indonesia showed.