Jakarta (ANTARA) - The Directorate General of Sea Transportation of the Transportation Ministry will serve 107 trailblazer ship routes in 2024 to improve connectivity in remote areas.

"This year, we will open trailblazer ship routes on 107 routes serving 43 ports of origin, spread across 22 provinces in Indonesia and serving more than 496 ports of call," Director General of Sea Transportation, Antoni Arif Priadi, noted in a statement from his office on Saturday.

He stated that the provision of trailblazer routes aims to provide better and more comprehensive transportation accessibility, especially for residents living in remote areas with no private commercial shipping.

"We understand that transportation connectivity is important in remote areas," Priadi remarked.

He explained that trailblazer ship routes are one of the backbones of transportation connectivity in Indonesia that continued to be the main focus of his side.

Meanwhile, Director of Sea Traffic and Transport, Hendri Ginting, stated that based on the results of the evaluation of 116 ships belonging to the Directorate General of Transportation, 99 ships were seaworthy and ready for operation. Meanwhile, the construction process is still underway for the KM Sabuk Nusantara 74 ship.

"This is a significant step in ensuring that ships for trailblazer routes are ready to serve the community," Ginting noted.

For efficiency, trailblazer ship routes had undergone adjustments from 117 routes in 2023 to 107 routes in 2024. Route selection was carried out by considering the number of seaworthy ships, namely 100 state-owned ships and seven ships belonging to the Transportation Human Resources Development Agency (BPSDM).

"This adjustment is carried out by considering the overlapping intersections of the route network and the level of passenger and goods occupancy at the ports of call. However, we ensured that each port of call proposed by the regional government will still be served by trailblazer ships," Ginting stated.

As a result of this efficiency, all trailblazer sea transportation routes in 2024 will be served by using passenger ships.

"For a more comfortable and efficient travel experience for people throughout Indonesia," he added.

The Directorate General of Transportation state that trailblazer ships are a vital means of transportation to open access to remote areas that are difficult to reach by land or air. This allows people in remote areas to be connected to economic, health, and educational centers.

With easy transportation access, remote areas have the opportunity to develop their economic sectors. The existence of trailblazer ships can also encourage local economic growth through trade, tourism, and other sectors.

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Translator: Benardy Ferdiansyah, Resinta Sulistiyandari
Editor: Azis Kurmala
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