The improved toll road should be offset by better crossing access."
Jakarta (ANTARA News) - President Joko Widodo (Jokowi), during a closed-door meeting on Monday, emphasized the need for improving transportation services between the islands of Sumatra and Java by operating better ferries.

"We are concerned about the operation of the toll road from Lampung Province to Palembang, which leads to vehicle queues in Merak-Bakauheni crossing lane," the Lampung Governor M Ridho Ficardo stated here on Monday.

Jokowi and Vice President M. Jusuf Kalla (Jokowi), along with Ricardo and other officials, held a meeting in the Presidents Office to discuss the National Strategic Project and Prioritized Program.

Ficardo stressed that the transportation authority should deploy several ferries of better quality to improve cargo transportation between Merak and Bakauheni ports that connect Sumatra and Java islands.

According to Ficardo, the authority should operate ferry trips every hour to transport cargo and passengers.

He reiterated that the authority can increase the ticket price to provide better services and deploy faster ferries.

"The improved toll road should be offset by better crossing access. It is fine to increase the price to provide better services," Ficardo pointed out.

The meeting also discussed the development of industrial areas in Tanggamus District that builds maritime industry, Mesuji District, and Waypisan District.

The governor added that the industrial area in Mesuji District could be developed, because the region has a mine of low calorie coals that can supply fuel for power plants.

The Trans Sumatera toll road has entered the second phase of construction with the development of toll road of 250 kilometers. The government is targeting its completion in 2018.

(Reported by Desca Lidya Natalia/Uu.B019/INE/KR-BSR/A014)

Editor: Priyambodo RH
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