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Indonesia's president plans shake-up in state power utility:WSJ

Monday, December 8, 2014 - 10:12
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Indonesian President Joko Widodo plans to announce a management shake-up this month in the state power utility, Perusahaan Listrik Negara (PLN), the Wall Street Journal reported.

[JAKARTA] Indonesian President Joko Widodo plans to announce a management shake-up this month in the state power utility, Perusahaan Listrik Negara (PLN), the Wall Street Journal reported.

The changes at PLN, which has a monopoly on electricity distribution across the archipelago, would include a partial or total replacement of its board, the newspaper said, citing an unnamed senior adviser of the leader.

Electricity demand growth in Southeast Asia's biggest economy has outpaced the rise in generating capacity, resulting in frequent blackouts in cities and leaving many rural areas without access to regular power supply.

Indonesia's electricity demand will rise to 207 TeraWatt-hours (TWh) this year, up almost 10 percent from 189 TWh last year, the government and the state utility have said.

Mr Joko's administration, which took office in late October, has been quick to reform struggling state owned enterprises.

State Enterprises Minister Rini Soemarno last month dismissed the entire board of state energy firm Pertamina and appointed a new chief as part of a broader effort to restore investor confidence in the oil and gas industry.

Ms Rini last week said she would decide the fate of heavily indebted state carrier PT Merpati Nusantara Airlines over the next few weeks, according to the Jakarta Post.

REUTERS