Bengkulu City, Bengkulu (ANTARA) - Development of Bengkulu - Lubuk Linggau Toll Road will bring economic benefits to Bengkulu's residents and the local authorities, Coordinating Economic Affairs Minister Airlangga Hartarto stated.

"One of the measures to bolster the regional economy is through (improving) road access to enhance logistics connectivity from and to the Bengkulu region," Hartarto stated here on Saturday.

The minister explained that the first phase of toll road development -- the 17.6-kilometre Bengkulu City - Taba Penanjung section of the toll road that connects Bengkulu City with Central Bengkulu District -- has been completed.

The subsequent stages of toll road development will be on the Taba Penanjung - Kepahiang section, spanning 23.7 km, connecting the districts of Central Bengkulu and Kepahiang, and the final section of Kepahiang-Lubuk Linggau, reaching 54.5 km, connecting Kepahiang and Lubuk Linggau in South Sumatra, the coordinating minister noted.

The next stage of toll road development is currently under evaluation by the central government and will be monitored as National Strategic Projects (PSN), he stated.

"The completion target of the Bengkulu toll road will be in 2024," Hartarto remarked.

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Budget for the development of the Taba Penanjung - Kepahiang toll road section is estimated to reach Rp23 trillion (US$1.54 billion), and land acquisition for the toll road is ongoing.

The next stage of toll road development will commence in 2023, and budget for the toll road had been set by the central government during a technical meeting with the National Development Planning Agency, Ministry of Public Works and Public Housing, and Finance Ministry.

Last March, the Public Works and Public Housing Ministry encouraged the acceleration of construction of the Lubuk Linggau - Bengkulu Toll Road to boost the regional economy and connectivity.

“Establishment of the toll road will reduce the logistics costs and travel time of goods and services' distribution. In addition, the infrastructure will encourage the growth of new economic centers," Minister Basuki Hadimuljono noted in a statement on Sunday (March 13).

The Lubuk Linggau - Bengkulu toll road, which is part of the Trans Sumatra Toll Road, has a total length of 95.8 kilometers (km).

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Translator: Anggi Mayasari, Nabil Ihsan
Editor: Suharto
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