"We are currently inclined (to extend the route) through the southern regions," Minister of Transportation Budi Karya Sumadi stated in Jakarta on Thursday.
He noted that his ministry will initially conduct further studies to determine through which regions the KCJB trains will go through to reach Surabaya.
Earlier, the ministry's Director General of Railways Mohamad, Risal Wasal, said that his side is projecting to extend the route of the high-speed railway to Surabaya via Yogyakarta, a southern city in Java.
"We are planning to extend the trains' route to Surabaya via Yogyakarta, but the name Jakarta-Bandung High-Speed Railway will remain," he told Commission V of the House of Representatives in Jakarta on July 5 this year.
President Joko Widodo (Jokowi) on Wednesday said that the government's plan to extend the route is aimed to drive the emergence of new spots of economic growth along the regions passed through by the trains.
"We want to grow new economic spots in the southern part of Java since we have already constructed toll roads in the northern part of the island," he remarked at the KCJB Padalarang Station in West Bandung, West Java.
Jokowi made the statement during a test ride on a KCJB train.
KCJB is included in the government's list of national strategic projects. Its high-speed trains can travel at a speed of 350 kilometers per hour and operate over a distance of 142.3 kilometers.
The trains can transport passengers from Halim Station in Jakarta to Padalarang Station in West Java within 32 minutes and from Tegalluar Station in Bandung, West Java, to Jakarta in only 44 minutes.
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Translator: Farhan A, Tegar Nurfitra
Editor: Anton Santoso
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