On account of being a coal-rich country, Indonesia wants to export its natural resource to Pakistan to support power projects under the China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC).
The Indonesian Ambassador to Pakistan, Adam M. Tugio, met with local industry players in Lahore to promote bilateral cooperation and increase Pakistan’s imports of Indonesian coal. He said that his country is well equipped and capable of supplying coal to Pakistan for power projects and related schemes under the CPEC.
Ambassador Tugio stated that his country intends to provide coal to Pakistan’s large-scale manufacturing units. He stated that the Pakistani government is paying close attention to the development of infrastructure and energy programs as part of the CPEC, and that coal is a crucial component of the energy projects that are being developed under it.
Indonesia ships 8.51 million tonnes of coal to the world, accounting for 26 percent of overall coal exports. Pakistan imported coal worth $1.233 billion in 2020 from the international market, including coal worth $224 million from Indonesia.
The envoy opined that a syndicate of Indonesian exporters could easily meet a major portion of Pakistan’s coal demand by negotiating with local businessmen. With this, he emphasized that Indonesian coal exports to Pakistan could reach $1 billion.
It should be noted that Pakistan is one of the Belt and Road Initiative BRI) countries where coal constitutes a major part of energy projects under the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC). Of the 18 priority energy projects, nine (8.22 GW) were backed by coal.
While coal shipments have become an integral part of Pakistan’s rising import bill, the country still holds 3,377 million tons (MMst) of proven coal reserves as of 2016, ranking 20th in the world and accounting for about zero percent of the world’s total coal reserves of 1,139,471 million tons (MMst).
Pakistan reportedly has proven reserves equivalent to 331.1 times its annual consumption. This means it has about 331 years of coal left (at current consumption levels and excluding unproven reserves).