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Indonesia: Government applauds BME’s standards in Indonesia.

BME Indonesia, part of South African blasting leader BME and the JSE-listed Omnia Group, has received a good mining practice award as the best performer in the blasting services category by the Indonesian government.

The award was made at a special ceremony on 29 September in Jakarta, where it was accepted by BME’s Business Manager Indonesia, Agusman Agusman. The company earned the accolade on the strength of its performance on its full-service blasting contract for a coal mining customer in East Kalimantan. BME Indonesia has been active on the contract for the past two years.

“This exciting award means a lot to us, especially since we began working as blasting contractors in this market only a couple of years ago,” said Agusman. BME Indonesia has been supplying explosive products and accessories into Indonesia for over a decade. Its holding company BME is a leading player in blasting services and products in Africa, with a global presence including Australia, Canada and the US.

“Government’s recognition of our high standards of operation is an important sign for the local mining industry,” he said. “This demonstrates the quality of our processes and performance, taking us another step forward in raising our competitiveness in this market.”

BME’s Business Manager Indonesia Agusman Agusman

He noted that the award criteria considered a range of factors related to how a company managed its operation. In addition to its safety focus, it also assessed each company’s staff competence, vendor management, innovation and level of local content.

“BME Indonesia’s safety record on this contract, where we employ over 45 people, has been exemplary,” he said. “We have managed to achieve a zero recordable case rate (RCR), with no lost-time incidents (LTIs) and no environmental incidents.”

This safety performance can be attributed to the disciplined application of BME’s Safety for Life policies, according to Ramesh Dhoorgapersadh, BME General Manager for Safety, Health, Environment, Risk and Quality (SHERQ).

“The award shows that, as a multinational company that is well recognised in Africa, BME has the capacity to implement its good blasting practice wherever it operates,” said Dhoorgapersadh. “It should also be remembered that the emulsion manufacturing plant at the mine site was commissioned at the start of the Covid-19 pandemic.”

Despite the disruption caused by the pandemic, all the necessary policies and controls were put in place and have been adhered to over the course of the contract, he said. BME’s stringent protocols are also aligned with the national regulations and standards of the country where operations are conducted. Omnia’s listing of the JSE also places a requirement on all group companies to be consistent in its application of standards wherever it operates, he noted.

Agusman added that BME Indonesia was also recognised for its local content contributions, which included making use – as far as possible – of vendors, products and employees from the area of East Kalimantan where the mining project is located.

“Another key element of our good blasting practice is environmental sustainability, an aspect of which is our incorporation of used oil in our emulsion product,” he said. “On our project in Indonesia, we ensure that 80% of the fuel agent in our emulsion is used oil from our customer’s mining vehicles.”

The utilisation of used oil is a well-established BME practice, providing considerable benefit to customers and the environment generally. It ensures that disposal of used oil from the mine can be conducted responsibly and economically.

Looking ahead, Agusman said BME Indonesia’s good blasting practice award bodes well for the future, as Indonesia’s mining sector holds great promise for the company. Beyond the country’s large coal mining sector, it has also been the world’s dominant producer of nickel over the last decade. It is estimated to host 30% of the world’s reserves of nickel, which is a vital component in batteries for electric vehicles. Its nickel production is expected to soon reach over a million tonnes a year, and exceed 2,5 million tonnes by 2030 – more than last year’s global production.

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