Japan, Indonesia agree to construction terms for Jakarta-Surabaya railway upgrade

27, Sep. 2019

Masafumi Ishii(3rd from L),  Japanese Ambassador to Indonesia,   Budi Karya Sumadi (2nd from L), Indonesia's transportation minister, and other government officials of Japan and Indonesia pose at a signing ceremony of summary record on a Jakarta-Surabaya high-speed railway upgrade at Hotel Pullman in Central Jakarta on Sept. 24, 2019.
Masafumi Ishii(3rd from L), Japanese Ambassador to Indonesia, Budi Karya Sumadi (2nd from L), Indonesia's transportation minister, and other government officials of Japan and Indonesia pose at a signing ceremony of summary record on a Jakarta-Surabaya high-speed railway upgrade at Hotel Pullman in Central Jakarta on Sept. 24, 2019.

JAKARTA, NNA – Japan and Indonesia have agreed on the construction terms for a $4.2 billion Jakarta-Surabaya high-speed railway upgrade, letting the two countries move toward project completion in six years.

The Indonesian government plans to improve the existing train line linking the capital to the country’s second largest city, Surabaya, on Java Island with financial assistance from Tokyo. The upgrade will double today’s train speed to 160 kilometers per hour, reducing the travel time to 5.5 hours from nine hours, it said.

The project “will provide an alternative mode of transportation for the public from Jakarta to Surabaya,” Indonesian Transportation Minister Budi Karya Sumadi said. The line supports 54 trips daily and expects 9 million passengers annually after 2025.

Indonesia’s Ministry of Transportation and the Japan International Cooperation Agency, Tokyo’s development aid body on Tuesday signed a summary record, which is a list of terms. The terms cover use of a narrow-gauge railway track, same as the one for Japan’s Shinkansen bullet train line.

The next step is a feasibility study. Land acquisition for the project is likely to take two years. The minister told a signing ceremony Tuesday the construction will begin in 2022 and end in 2025.

The construction will be carried out in two phases, with the first between Jakarta and the Central Java provincial capital Semarang and the second between Semarang and Surabaya, capital of East Java Province, according to the Indonesian government.

The Indonesian government aims to acquire 40 to 50 percent of its materials from domestic sources, Budi said.

Japanese Ambassador to Indonesia Masafumi Ishii called the agreement a “very big step”. Japan will also explore the possibility of an infrastructure development technology transfer to the Southeast Asian country while maximizing the use of domestic construction material.

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