Energy sufficiency is the backbone of every nation and electricity is the prominent power being utilized. Unfortunately, West Papua’s electrification ratio is still lower than the adequate capacity. Hence, a mini State Owned Electricity Company or PLN for villages in Papua is offered as one of the solutions.
The Minister of Energy and Mineral Resources, Ignasius Jonan, has signed the Regulation of the Ministry of Energy and Mineral Resources Number 38 of 2016 regarding the Acceleration of Electrification in Underdeveloped Villages, Remote Areas, Borders, and Populated Isolated Islands Through the Conduction of Small Scale Electricity Provisioning (Permen ESDM 38/2016). This regulation would also benefited Papua especially with “mini” PLN for Villages in Papua.
Electrification to achieve energy self-sufficiency demands a lot of efforts, resources and With the new regulation, private sectors, state owned enterprises, and community cooperation units are promoted to implement electrification to 2,500 un-electrified remote villages.
Hence, State owned Enterprises other than the State Owned Electricity Company (PLN) are allowed to directly sell electricity to remote areas. PLN would no longer hold the monopoly for electricity distribution. The private sector would then be able to become some sort of “mini PLN”, especially for remote places which have not been reached by PLN.
According to the Vice Minister of ESDM, Arcandra Tahar, the new regulation was created in order to implement electrification in areas that PLN can’t reach. Out of the 2,500 villages that have not been electrified, only around 500 villages can be reached by PLN. Especially to achieve 100% of village electrification, especially Papua with 2,500 of un-electrified villages.
With the electrification of remote villages in Indonesia, the national electrification ratio can reach up to 97% in 2019 and 100% in 2025. This regulation is also align with the national goal to develop the inlands and remote places.
If the electricity electrification has been well distributed in Indonesia, the economy boost would start, people’s productivity would increase, the industry would be supported, income would improve and welfare would then be achieved. With this goal set on the go, Papua’s brighter future is already on the horizon.