Pelni May Increase Long-Sailing Tariff By 20%

JAKARTA— Ministry of Transportation will approve proposal by PT Pelayaran Nasional Indonesia (Pelni) to increase tariff upper limit of local sea transportation soon.

Director of Sea Traffic and Transportation, Directorate General of Sea Transportation, Ministry of Transportation, said he is now almost completing tariff evaluation proposed by Pelni.

Yet, he explained the rise in tariff of inter land sea transportation reaches 20% or smaller than the percentage proposed by the company at 27%. “It is predicted to rise by 20%, the detail will be discussed by the small team,” he said, Tuesday (2/4).

The plan to increase tariff considers numerous things such as fuel price hike in the middle of last year and fluctuation of IDR exchange value against USD, once hitting IDR12,000.

Harry added the percentage is not final yet. Later, the Ministry and Pelni will set up a small team to discuss further about the impact of tariff rise on users.

Besides, the small team will also discuss on routes. “There will be small team to discuss it,” he said.

PT Pelni has asked for evaluation of tariff upper limit for sea transportation since late 2013.

The evaluation is the first since 2009. It is considering vessel maintenance and operating costs which increase, such as spare part cost and fuel price.

So far, Pelni refers to Regulation by Ministry of Transportation No. KM 8/2009 on Tariff Upper Limit of Sea Transportation in Economy Class.

In the regulation, Pelni is not allowed to impose tariff higher than the determined limit, such as Ambon-Jayapura route, costing IDR365,000 per person. (see table)

President Director of PT Pelni, Syahril Japarin, stated if calculated meticulously, the evaluation of tariff upper limit can reach 100%, but he explained he cannot impose full rise to make it affordable for public.

“We propose for affordable tariff , not even half of it,” he said in a visit to Bisnis Indonesia office, Monday (3/3).

Didik Dwi Prasetio, Senior Manager of PSO and Yacht at Pelni, added this year it has to reduce operating of three vessels in some routes in eastern Indonesia.

It is because public service obligation (PSO) fund only amounts to IDR872 billion, smaller than the initial demand at IDR1.03 trillion. “We stop three vessels from PSO. There are lots of them in eastern Indonesia,” he said.

Deep Review

Apart from that, Manager of Indonesian Consumer Foundation (YLKI), Tulus Abadi, assumes the government needs to have deep review before determining the percentage of rise in tariff upper limit for domestic destination.

It concerns comparison between the amount of government subsidy and percentage of tariff increase.

The evaluation must go hand in hand with better quality, ranging from check in system, before boarding the vessel, to transportation access from and to the port for passengers.

“We must observe the minimum sailing standard. Rise in tariff must go along with clear service standard, access to and from tenh port must also be considered since it is now so insufficient,” he said.

He continued evaluation of tariff should not exceed plane ticket which now is much affordable with efficient service. “Otherwise, Pelni will lose customers.

Also, evaluation must be imposed on crowded routes such as Medan and Makassar,w hile pioneer routes should retain the incumbent tariff. “We should not increase sailing tariff to Papua and Flores, on the contrary, this must be subsidized. People really rely on it,” he said.

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