Jakarta (ANTARA News) - Coordinating Minister for Maritime Affairs Luhut Binsar Panjaitan said the government planned to reactivate the southern Java highway ahead of the Islamic holy days Eid al Fitr June 25-26.

"There is a project proposed to us to revive the southern Java highway . Parts of the road are still functioning and parts have yet to be built," Luhut said here on Tuesday.

The route extends between the western part and the eastern end of Java, he said, adding the proposal deserves follow-up action as development in Java has been concentrated too much along the northern coast.

"There has been offer of scheme of assistance. We will meet again before we come to a decision next week," he said.

Meanwhile, he said, observation has been made over the northern highway of its readiness ahead of Eid al Fitr when millions of people mainly from Jakarta are expected to travel using the highway to celebrate the holy days with relatives .

"We have checked all preparations ahead of Eid al Fitr, coordination between related agencies the Transport Ministry, security, the health ministry and public works and housing ministry to guarantee better service in the northern coastal highway.

"We will finalize before the end of May to ensure that everything runs as expected. Until today preparations have been progressing . We learn from past experience . Everything look better," he said.

Every year days before Eid al Fitr , big unsolved problem is traffic jams along the northern highway and fatal accidents.

Luhut said the government also will reactivate roll on and roll off vessels between Semarang and Surabaya and between Jakarta and Lampung to reduce congestion in land transport.

"The cost is lower and level of safety would be higher," he said.

He said by reactivating a number of old routes would give more alternatives to reach destinations and would result in better distribution of goods. (*)

Editor: Heru Purwanto
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