The Indonesian government introduced mandatory B35 blending nationwide as of 1 August, Argus Media quoted the energy ministry’s director of bio-energy Edi Wibowo as saying.

Although Indonesia launched B35 on 1 February, as of 1 June the blend had not been implemented at three terminals, the report said.

However, Wibowo was quoted as saying on 28 June that upgrades to support the B35 blending programme were expected be completed at the three facilities by 1 August in time for the nationwide roll out.

“Some places … already have B35. But there are still several [business entities] terminals providing B30. By tomorrow [1 August], every one of them [will] provide B35,” Fajar Wahyudi, head of distribution at the Agency Oil Palm Plantation Managers (BPDPKS), was quoted in a report by Astra Agro as saying in a discussion titled ‘Pursuing Foreign Exchanges through the B35 Program’ held at the Hotel Sultan on 31 July.

While the government had also carried out road tests for B40 from July-December 2022, the country was still reviewing the readiness of various stakeholders, Argus Media wrote.

“For its [B40] implementation the government is still reviewing the readiness of related parties, biodiesel producers, diesel fuel retailers, consumer acceptance, infrastructure, as well as the availability of feedstock and incentives,” Wibowo was quoted as saying.

“We [are] also taking into account the balance of palm oil supplies for food, energy, exports and oleochemical purposes.”

The biodiesel blending programme aimed to strengthen Indonesia’s energy security and increase the country’s renewable energy share to 23% by 2025, the report said.

However, exports of palm oil products and derivatives had to be maintained as palm oil was the largest contributor to Indonesia’s foreign revenue, according to Wibowo.

Against this backdrop, in its Indonesia: Oilseeds and Products Update published on 3 August the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) increased its forecasts slightly for Indonesian palm oil consumption in 2022/23 to 19M tonnes due to expected higher biodiesel production for export markets.

According to data from the Indonesian biodiesel producer association, biodiesel production in the country totalled 5.8bn litres in the first half of this year, up 5% from the same period last year.