Indonesian president defends gas conversion policy

14:40, August 05, 2010      

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Indonesian president Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono defended the policy to convert to usage of subsidized kerosene to gas for households purpose outlined in his previous administration period, local media reported on Thursday.

"There was nothing wrong with the policy. If there were problems regarding the policy implementation, we can fix them together," President Yudhoyono said at a senior officials meeting held in presidential palace Bogor, West Java.

The president said that the policy was apparently successful, effective and fruitful to reduce subsidy funds spent by the government.

The president made the statement following series of gas canister explosions that killed several people across the country in the last few months,

The government has withdrew one million of 3-kilogram gas canisters as of July this year, planned to gradually withdraw all nine million ones that already distributed to the public.

Regarding the 3-kilogram gas canister explosions that happened recently in the last few months across the country, killed many people and injured tens others, the president said that he had told his deputy, Boediono, to set up particular team to address this issue, the Antara news service reported.

Coordinating Public Welfare Minister Agung Laksono said that the explosion was caused by less information on gas-hose setting procedure and leaks in gas canisters. Some of the gas canisters were made without complied with national product quality standard (SNI).

Besides that, the explosions were also caused by unruly business of gas distributors to siphon gas from the subsidized 3- kilogram gas canisters to the non-subsidized 12-kilogram canisters.

Source: Xinhua


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