Joko Widodo, President of Indonesia, is contemplating buying Russian oil to ease the burden of rising energy prices.
In an interview with the Financial Times, Widodo said, “We always monitor all of the options. If there is the country (and) they give a better price, of course,”
Widodo raised the price of subsidised fuel by 30% earlier this month, citing financial concerns as the reason for the price increase.
Read: Indonesia hikes fuel prices by 30%, cuts energy subsidies
Thousands of protestors gathered last week in Jakarta and other major cities to condemn the government’s decision to reduce fuel subsidies. The 270 million-strong nation was rocked by demonstrations after the decision.
However, any decision to buy Russian crude oil at a price higher than the G7-agreed price cap could result in US penalties against Indonesia.
Sandiaga Uno, Indonesia’s minister of tourism, claimed in August that Indonesia had received a 30% discount on Russian petroleum. The nation’s state-owned oil corporation, Pertamina, then declared that it was examining the risks of acquiring Russian oil.
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Due to rising food costs, Indonesia, the largest economy in Southeast Asia, reported annual inflation of 4.7% in August.