The first phase will be the Jakarta-Semarang section which is expected to be developed for two years.
"The last discussion with Vice President Jusuf Kalla concluded that the Jakarta-Surabaya train project will use the existing line and work will start in 2018," the minister told reporters at Trunojoyo Airport, Sumenep, East Java, on Sunday.
President Joko Widodo and his entourage are scheduled to make a working visit to Sumenep with a number of agendas, including a stop-over at Trunojoyo Airport on Sunday.
According to the transportation minister, the Semi-high speed train project is currently under study. The study by the Japanese team will be completed at the the end of November.
"The project is fast and cheap while at the same time it can resolve many things such as the problem of level crossings in 800 points," he said.
So, works on the level crossings could start in early 2018. This means that with work on the level crossings, the construction of the semi-fast train project has been started.
"Our prediction is that the Jakarta-Semarang section, including its electrification, will be done in two years and the rest Semarang-Surabaya section will be carried in the following two years," he said.
Minister Sumadi said that the Semi Fast Train can cover the Jakarta-Surabaya route within five hours with a minimum speed of 140 kilometers per hour (km/h).
"For the time being, Japan will build the train at a maximum speed of 120 km/h," he said.
The minister added that the estimated investment for the project is around Rp60 trillion, including about Rp20 trillion for the construction of the level crossings.
"This amount is lower than the previous calculation of Rp80 trillion," he said.
In the construction of level crossings, both for flyovers and under passes, the minister will cooperate with the Ministry of Public Works and Public Housing (PUPR).
"We will share with the Ministry of PUPR for the level crossing construction because PUPR is also concerned," he said.
Decisions taken with regard to the level crossing points, said Sumadi, will later be reported to President Joko Widodo.
"The initial estimated cost for the construction of a level crossing is Rp25 billion or about Rp20 trillion for 800 crossings along the Jakarta-Surabaya route," said Minister Budi Karya Sumadi. (*)