Jakarta (ANTARA) - The Public Works and Public Housing (PUPR) Ministry informed that six sections of the 596-kilometer Trans-Sumatera Toll Road had been fully operated in July 2023, while the other seven sections of 361 kilometers were in the construction phase. "The toll road will help to reduce logistics costs and cut travel time for the distribution of goods and services between regions," PUPR Minister Basuki Hadimuljono said in Jakarta on Sunday.

He added that the toll road would also encourage the growth of new economic centers, especially in areas traversed by toll roads.

One of the Trans-Sumatera Toll Road sections that President Joko Widodo (Jokowi) recently inaugurated and is already operating is the 16.7-kilometer Bengkulu-Taba Penanjung Toll Road, which was built with a budget of Rp4.8 trillion, he conveyed.

The minister mentioned that this toll road is part of the main corridor on the 95.8-kilometer-long Bengkulu to Lubuk Linggau segment.

Meanwhile, seven other sections that are still under construction, spanning 361 kilometers, are the 48-kilometer Indrapura-Kisaran toll road, which has a progress rate of 85.5 percent and is targeted to be completed in 2023.

Furthermore, the 143-kilometer Kuala Tanjung-Tebing Tinggi section, with a progress rate of 84.26 percent, is targeted for completion by the end of 2023.

Followed by the 64-kilometer Indralaya-Prabumulih Simpang toll road, which is targeted to be ready for operation in the near future.

Meanwhile, on the Pekanbaru-Padang section, there are two sections under construction, namely the Bangkinang-Koto Kampar section (24 kilometers) with 74.8 percent progress and the Padang-Sicincin section (37 kilometers) with 32.6 percent progress. Previously, the Pekanbaru-Bangkinang Section had operated for 31 kilometers.

The next section that is still under construction is Binjai-Pangkalan Brandan, with 79.9 percent progress after the Binjai-Stabat section, which has been operating for 12 kilometers.

Furthermore, there is the Sigli-Banda Aceh Toll Road (74 kilometers long), which leaves two sections with 38 kilometers left under construction, namely the Blang Bintang-Baitussalam and Sigli-Seuliemum sections, with 81 percent progress.

The ministry's spokesperson, Endra S. Atmawidjaja, conveyed that the existence of this toll road is included in government investment for the long term.

He said that Sumatra Island has many potentials and resources for Indonesia.

"By providing toll road services, our goal is not just to build infrastructure but also open up space for prospective areas growth in the future," he remarked.

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Translator: Indra Arief P, Resinta S
Editor: Azis Kurmala
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