Peruri buys more printers
on high demand
Despite the growth in electronic financial transactions, most Indonesians still prefer cash payments, making the demand for banknotes in the country remain at a high level.
Prasetio, president director of state-owned securities paper and banknote printing company Peruri, said paper money payments in the country accounted for 90 percent of overall transactions.
“Most credit card users are from the upper-middle class. The majority of the people who live in the small cities prefer to make cash transactions,” Prasetio said on the sidelines of the 20th Pacific Rim Banknote Printers’ Conference on Monday.
The conference, which will run until Oct. 26, is taking place in Bali. It discusses various issues including paper notes design, production methods and distribution systems as well as the prevention of counterfeiting.
Fifteen country members, such as the US, Australia, Brazil, China, Japan and South Korea, are participating in the event.
Prasetio said the high number of cash payments in society had increased the demand for paper money, adding that Bank Indonesia (BI) was in need of 7 billion paper notes this year, up from 6 billion in 2012.
To meet the central bank’s demand, Prasetio said, the banknote maker planned to purchase 12 printing machines with a total capacity of 2 billion paper notes a year.
It will cost Rp 200 billion (US$17.6 million) to buy the machines.
As of October, Peruri owned 42 machines with a total capacity of 7 billion paper notes a year, sufficient to meet Bank Indonesia’s (BI) demand.
However, Prasetio said not all the machines were in good condition.
“Some of them are very old. We want to replace them with new ones,” he said.
Besides the printing machines, the company also plans to buy a 7 percent share in the state-owned paper producer PT Kertas Padalarang so that the supply of specialty paper for banknotes is sufficient.
“If the government approves, our shares in PT Kertas Padalarang will reach 92 percent,” he said.
Meanwhile, Peruri vice president Ashari said the company also planned to diversify its business by starting to print gold bullion as demand from the market was also growing.
“The state mining company PT Aneka Tambang [Antam] has been overwhelmed by gold bullion demands from the pawnshop company Pegadaian, so we want to grab that opportunity,” he said, adding the firm planned to provide 2 to 3 tons of gold per year to Pegadaian.
Peruri has already diversified into the property sector and into digital security services by printing passports, visas, customs papers and stamps.
In 2012, Peruri booked Rp 23 billion in profits.
Ashari said the firm’s profits in 2012 were small due to a late order from BI. The late order made the banknote printing company rush the money-printing in eight months, from the normal 12 months.
By the end of this year, Peruri hoped to book Rp 250 billion in profits, which will be used for the purchase and improvement of its printing machines. Meanwhile, in 2014, the company targets to book profit of Rp 280 billion. (tam)