High-speed rail project in line with Jokowi`s vision: Minister

"With an open economy, Indonesia has entered the AEC. There are no borders or boundaries in the ASEAN economy," State-Owned Enterprises Minister Rini Soemarno said.
Bandung, W Java (ANTARA News) - The high-speed rail project connecting Jakarta and Bandung is in line with President Joko Widodos (Jokowis) vision of development to face the global economy and the ASEAN Economic Community (AEC).

"With an open economy, Indonesia has entered the AEC. There are no borders or boundaries in the ASEAN economy," State-Owned Enterprises Minister Rini Soemarno noted while conducting socialization of the fast train here on Friday.

Therefore, Soemarno noted that the government and community should build inter-regional connectivity through the development of mass transportation as part of the efforts to face the global economy.

"We want to reduce dependence on various modes of private transport through the development of a mass transportation system," the minister remarked.

Soemarno noted that the government was committed to improving the railway network in regions of Indonesia such as Sumatra, Kalimantan, and Sulawesi for boosting economic development and inter-regional connectivity.

"For West Java Province, the government will build a mass transportation network connecting one city to another in a short period of time," Soemarno affirmed.

The minister emphasized that the high-speed train project, under a business-to-business scheme, does not utilize the state budget.

"Hence, state-owned enterprises (SOEs) should be physically present in the society as the representatives of the state. The SOEs should help to sustain the governments programs without depending on the state budget," the minister affirmed.

The minister noted that the development of the project would boost economic growth in the provinces of Jakarta and West Java.

"The project will improve the quality of life of the people in the two regions. With a speed of around 350 kilometers per hour, it is expected to take only 35 minutes to travel between Bandung and Jakarta," the minister stated.

Earlier, the development of a high-speed rail project connecting Jakarta and Bandung is expected to require some four thousand workers, PT Kereta Cepat Indonesia China (KCIC) Director Hanggoro Budi Wiryawan stated.

"More than four thousand workers will be absorbed during the construction of the high-speed rail project connecting Jakarta and Bandung," Hanggoro revealed on Thursday.

The KCIC is committed to empowering the local citizens to work in the development of the project.

"We will coordinate with cooperatives to provide food and shelter. Experts and supervisors will come from outside," Hanggoro remarked.

Therefore, he has appealed to village heads to disseminate information to local residents seeking employment in the project.

"We request that the information should specify the skills or abilities of the local citizens. We will train the people who do not have the required skills," he pointed out.

On the occasion, village heads and community representatives involved in the project viewed the presentation and heard the explanation on the projects plan.

"Village heads and community representatives voiced their aspirations, while we explained about the program. As a result, all programs will be able to involve all stakeholders, such as the communities," he added.(*)

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