Indonesia's budget has for years been burdened by large subsidies for electricity consumption. A series of recent reforms has delivered a substantial reduction in these subsidies. In this paper we estimate demand-side effects of these reforms on electricity use. Our analysis utilizes a three-dimensional dataset covering six consumer groups, 16 regions, and 1992-2015. We control for various fixed effects, and use an instrumental variable approach. Our estimates suggest that subsidy reductions since 2013 had induced savings in annual electricity use of around 7% relative to the no-reform counterfactual as of 2015. The phase-out of remaining subsidies has the potential to generate further improvements in the efficiency of electricity use, while freeing up resources for other priorities such as infrastructure spending.
|Publication status||Published - 2018|