The history of the establishment of PT PELNI began with the issuance of a Joint Decree (SKB) between the Minister of Transportation and the Minister of Public Works on September 5, 1950 which contained the Establishment of the Ship Control Center (PEPUSKA) Foundation.
The background of the establishment of the PEPUSKA Foundation was initiated by the refusal of the Dutch government at the request of Indonesia to change the status of Dutch shipping companies operating in Indonesia, N.V. K.P.M (Koninklijke Paketvaart Matschappij) becomes a Limited Liability Company (PT). The Indonesian government also wants the KPM ships to carry out their shipping operations in Indonesian waters using the Red and White flag. The Dutch government firmly rejected all requests submitted by the Indonesian government.
With an initial capital of 8 (eight) units of ships with a total tonnage of 4,800 DWT (death weight tons), PEPUSKA sailed side by side with a fleet of KPM with more than half a century of experience. The competition was really out of balance at that time, because the KPM fleet was experienced in addition, there were also more fleets and monopoly contracts.
Finally on 28 April 1952 the Pepuska Foundation was officially dissolved. At the same time PT PELNI was established under the Decree of the Minister of Transportation Number M.2 / 1/2 dated February 28, 1952 and No. A.2 / 1/2 dated April 19, 1952, and the State Gazette of the Republic of Indonesia No. 50 dated June 20, 1952. As First President Director was appointed R. Ma'moen Soemadipraja (1952-1955).
Eight ships owned by the Pepuska Foundation were handed over to PT PELNI as initial capital. Because it was considered insufficient, the Import Export Bank provided funds to purchase ships in addition and ordered 45 "coasters" from Western Europe. While waiting for the "coaster" to be ordered from Europe, PELNI chartered foreign vessels consisting of various flags. This step was taken to fill the routes left by KPM. After that, one by one the chartered ships were replaced with "coasters" that came from Europe. Then it was added to the war repeal ships from Japan.
PT PELNI's status has changed twice. In 1961 the government determined the status change from the Company's Company to become a State Company (PN) and included in the Republic of Indonesia State Gazette No. LN 1961. Then in 1975 the company status was changed from the State Company (PN) to the PELNI Limited Liability Company (PT) in accordance with the Establishment Deed No. 31 dated 30 October 1975. These changes are included in the Republic of Indonesia State Gazette No. 562-1976 and Additional Republic of Indonesia News No. 60 dated June 27, 1976.
Along with the passage of time and business development, the company experienced several changes in the form of the Business Entity. In 1975 the Company was in accordance with the Deed of Establishment Number 31 dated October 30, 1975 and Amendment Deed Number 22 dated March 4, 1998 concerning the Articles of Association of PT. Pelni announced in the State Gazette of the Republic of Indonesia on April 16, 1999 Number 31, additional State Gazette Number 2203.