In a move to accelerate utilization of renewable energy in Indonesia, the Ministry of Energy and Mineral Resources (MEMR) issued Ministerial Regulation 49/2018 on the use of electricity produced through rooftop photovoltaic solar panels for customers of state-owned electricity company Perusahaan Listrik Negara (PLN).
The regulation that came into effect on 16 November 2018 favours photovoltaic (PV) installations with high self-consumption rate and allows PLN to offset its customer’s electricity cost by calculating excess energy under a metering scheme.
The following are the primary provisions of the Ministerial Regulation:
- A PLN’s customer is permitted to install solar photovoltaic power (Pembangkit Listrik Tenaga Surya Atap or rooftop PLTS), subject to PLN’s approval by submitting an application that includes the solar PV’s technical specifications in addition to PLN’s administrative requirements. PLN’s customer is defined as any individual, business entity, or any other entity that purchases electricity from PLN. In effect, the new regulation covers a wide range of electricity consumers, from household to industrial use with certain requirements differentiating the usage of rooftop PLTS by industrial users.
- A rooftop PLTS is specified as an on-grid solar system connected to PLN’s electricity grid. The electricity generated from a rooftop PLTS owned by a PLN’s customer is exported to PLN (kWh Export) electricity grid and is priced at 65% of the applicable electricity tariff. The electricity tariff payable by the rooftop PLTS customer will be calculated based on the difference between the amount of kWh export and the amount of electricity received through the customer’s solar PV system based on an installed electricity meter that is part of the rooftop PLTS structure. The electricity price calculation formulae is further detailed in the regulation.
- A PLN customer can only install and use rooftop PLTS system with a maximum generating capacity equivalent, or less than, the amount of the existing electricity connection capacity that the customer receives from PLN. The installation of a rooftop PLTS system with a capacity exceeding 200 kWh will be subject to the issuance of a specific Operation License, as regulated by the prevailing electricity regulations.
- PLN will review the rooftop PLTS installation application within 15 working days upon receipt of the complete application by PLN. Customers will be notified by PLN when the application is completed.
- The construction and installation of the rooftop PLTS system is to be conducted by an Indonesian entity in possession of an electricity business certificate and electricity supporting services license as required under the prevailing electricity regulations. The electricity supporting services business is open for foreign investors with maximum foreign ownership of 95% pursuant to the current Negative List of Investment. The system is subject to local content requirements and must be in possession of the Operation Worthiness Certificate.
- The regulation enables PLN’s industrial customers segment to install and utilizes off-grid rooftop PLTS system. The regulation also allows the installation and use of the solar PV system by non-PLN customer, provided that it is intended for own use (non-commercial) in compliance with prevailing electricity regulations.
The issuance of Ministerial Regulation 49/2018 revokes certain provisions in the Ministry of Energy and Mineral Resources regulation No. 01 of 2017 relating to the use of rooftop PLTS system.