Indonesia’s state oil and gas company Pertamina will sign up short-term supply and refining contracts to meet its domestic fuel needs next year when its refineries are shut down for repairs and maintenance.

The contracts are expected to stretch over three months during repair works on the refineries in Balikpapan and Balongan.

Pertamina President Baihaki Hakim said it will import fuel from a number of countries including Singapore under short-term contracts. The contract will ensure that Indonesia’s oil product needs will be adequately met when the refineries are shut down.

The 188,000-b/d Balikpapan II refinery is scheduled for the first shutdown in April and May 2003 while the 125,000 b/d Balongan refinery will be idled in December 2003.

Indonesia’s oil products demand is growing at 3-4% a year despite the uncertain outlook on its economy.