PT Bukit Asam Tbk (PTBA), PT Pertamina (Persero) and Air Product have announced the planned construction of coal downstreaming DME plant at PTBA’s mine site at Peranap, Riau.

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PTBA, Pertamina and Air Products to construct coal downstreaming DME plant at Peranap, Riau

The announcement followed the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) and Joint Venture Agreement concerning coal downstreaming between PTBA, Pertamina and Air Products on 7 November 2018 in Allentown, USA. As part of the deal, the three parties have agreed to cooperate in coal gasification that will convert low rank coal to an end product with higher added value.

In mid-January 2019, the three companies agreed to establish a JV company that processes coal and its downstream products. The Agreement was stipulated in a Points of Agreement in the Establishment of PTBA’s Mine Mouth Coal Downstreaming JV at Peranap, Riau.

Through the gasification technology, the coal will be converted to syngas, which will be processed into an end product.

PTBA will supply the coal from its Peranap mine site to the JV plant which will be operated by Pertamina. Meanwhile, the design optimisation technology will come from Air Products and Chemicals.

The Minister for State Owned Enterpries, Rini Soemarno, sees the agreement as a positive, saying that Indonesia should develop its coal downstreaming industry not only to reduce imports, but also to develop export.

“Downstreaming is also important as an effort to reduce coal pollution by producing clean energy in the form of syngas, which will serve as an upstream for various products, such as DME to diesel fuel and aviation fuel,” Minister Rini said.

The coal gasification project at Peranap Mine Mouth, is expected to help strengthen the national energy resilience and to improve welfare for the community.

The next phase following the launch is the plant construction, with the plant capacity slated for 1.4 million tonnes of DME annually with coal requirement of 9.2 million tonnes.

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