ITM to meet sales target despite mine closure

PT Indo Tambangraya Megah, Indonesia's fourth-largest coal producer, said it will meet its 2010 sales target despite the police’s closure of its Jorong operation in South Kalimantan last month.

Somyot Ruchirawat, president director of the company owned by Thailand’s top Banpu, said it would cover the Jorong shortfall by ramping up production at its Trubaindo and Bharinto mines in East Kalimantan. He could not offer a date for Jorong to reopen, saying the Forestry Ministry was still processing the permit.

Police in February temporarily shut Jorong, saying ITM’s land-use permit had expired. The industry has long been hindered by a tangle of conflicting regulations that has resulted in other closures as well.

Trubaindo is targeted to produce 6 Mt of coal, up from 5.2 Mt last year, Ruchirawat told The Jakarta Globe. He added that the Bharinto mine was due to start production by the end of this year with an initial production target of 0.2 Mt. Jorong had been slated for output of 2 Mt  this year.

ITM earlier reported profit of $335.51 million last year, a 42.8% rise compared with $234.92 million in 2008, mainly on stronger sales and lower operational costs. Total sales in 2009 were up 15% to $1.5 billion, while operational costs fell 2.3% to $134.5 million.