By: Made Raditya )*
The price of Fuel Oil (BBM) has been adjusted by the government and the public can still enjoy the subsidy, because it has been converted into Direct Cash Assistance (BLT) for BBM. Various groups also appreciate this decision because it is considered to be more targeted.
The price of pertalite type of fuel is adjusted to 10,000 rupiah per liter. Price changes occurred because the price of world crude oil rose to 100 dollars per barrel. The government has decided to reduce fuel subsidies so that the state budget is not burdened.
When the fuel subsidy is reduced, the government provides compensation for BLT (direct cash assistance) of Rp. 600,000. The total funds issued by the government are 12.4 trillion rupiah, and will be distributed to 20 million Indonesian citizens who are categorized as underprivileged. The public can check whether their name is included in the BLT recipient on the website https://cekbansos.kemensos.go.id/
The chairman of the DPR RI, Puan Maharani, stated that the transfer of fuel subsidies to BLT must be right on target. Considering changes in fuel prices have an effect on transportation costs and other costs. BLT for the people must be disbursed immediately.
BLT is given to underprivileged communities in 4 terms, and distributed via the Post Office. With the provision of BLT BBM, the subsidy will be more effective, because it can be directly enjoyed by the people.
The disbursement of BLT BBM is disbursed in stages and has begun to be given in September 2022. The government transfers it via the Post Office because it reaches all over Indonesia, especially for residents in suburban areas. The provision of BLT via the Post Office was also chosen because not everyone has a bank account as a place for distributing BLT BBM.
Many people appreciate the provision of BLT because it is given in cash. Subsidies are diverted by cash and not in the form of basic necessities or other necessities. Giving BLT like this is more practical and does not require transportation costs. Moreover, the BLT money can be directly spent by the people to meet their needs.
The transfer of the fuel subsidy to BLT is very appropriate because it really targets the poor. They really can’t enjoy Pertalite’s old price. Instead, they get BLT from the government and can be used to buy basic necessities and daily needs.
So far, the Pertalite type of fuel subsidy has been misused by private vehicle users in Indonesia. Car owners should use Pertamax fuel or other types of fuel that do not have subsidies, because they are included in the affordability category. However, they instead buy Pertalite type of fuel with the excuse of saving.
In fact, Pertalite is fuel that is subsidized by the government and only for the poor, who obviously don’t own a car. Therefore, if the Pertalite subsidy is reduced, the price will not be much different from Pertalite. The car owner will be obliged to buy Pertamax and indeed he is not allowed to buy subsidized fuel, because it is not his right.
The transfer of the fuel subsidy from reducing the price of Pertalite to distributing BLT is considered very appropriate because it avoids fraudulent practices from those who eat the subsidy even though it is not their right. Therefore, the entire community appreciates the change in fuel prices and the transfer of subsidies to BLT. The reason is because it will eliminate cheating from rich people who openly buy Pertalite.
Changes in the subsidy channel must be done because the fuel subsidy should not be enjoyed by the upper middle class. They are clearly not affected by their financial condition because of changes in fuel prices. But instead they buy Pertalite arbitrarily and when the price changes, they will replace it with Pertamax, which has a higher RON value.
The government is still pro-people and is thinking about how the poor can survive even though the price of fuel has changed. The provision of subsidies is the best way so that small people can enjoy them and are not too affected by the effects of fuel price adjustments.
Pertalite purchase settings are also changed using the app and purchases are limited. The goal is to reduce fraud from luxury cars that will buy Pertalite type fuel.
However, purchases via this application only started in September 2022 and only applies to car owners with CC 1500 and below and does not apply to motorcycle riders. Meanwhile, cars with 1500 CC category and above must use Pertamax or other non-subsidized fuel. This is also done to reduce fraud in the purchase of subsidized fuel.
The government provides BLT BBM as a way to divert fuel subsidies. If the price of Pertalite and subsidized fuel is adjusted, then there will still be compensation for the people. With the compensation through BLT BBM, it is hoped that people’s purchasing power can be maintained.
)* The author is a contributor to the Pertiwi Institute