Railway in Papua Could Reduce Prices by 50 Percent, says Director of Transport

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Jakarta, Jubi – Director of Transports of State Ministry of National Development Planning/BAPPENAS Bambang Prihartono said railway and Trans Papua highway can reduce the prices of goods in the eastern Indonesia region by up to 50 percent.

He said in Jakarta on Tuesday (5/1/2015) that at national level, the development plan on land transport infrastructure would reduce three percent of logistics costs of Gross Domestic Product, while marine transports infrastructure could reduce four percent of GDP’s logistics costs. Papua is one of regions that contribute highest logistics costs, mostly due to poor access of land transports infrastructure.

Through the construction of two land transports infrastructure, namely railway and highway, BAPPENAS estimates its contribution in reducing the price of goods will up to 50 percent.

“Papua has the highest logistics costs. Based on the macro calculation, we estimate in Papua, the price of cement that currently at 1 million rupiahs could be reduced to 500,000 rupiahs,” he said.

He said that the Ministry of Transportation is still working to complete a feasibility study on train for Papua. This on going study will produce a master plan on train transportation in Papua. During this process, Bambang said, the Ministry of Transportation has set a first route that is Sorong-Manokwari.

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“For the next route, we are still waiting the result of the study once it is completed, including its investment costs,” he said.

Bambang said Sorong-Manokwari route was designated because of the demand and the capacity to build train transportation in both cities are relatively high.

The next route would be determined later based on the same criteria. Further, he said the Ministry of Transportation is also considering the spatial development plan of railway to not coincide with protected forest areas in Papua.

According to him, the feasibility study does take a long time to prevent contact with the protected forest areas and because of such constraints of Papua land surface dominated by mountainous land.

“So, it’s not easy, because there are many technical aspects needs to be corrected,” he said.

The train will function as passenger train and cargo train.

In addition of railway construction, the calculation of the price reduction up to 50 percent is also taking account the benefits of the construction of Trans Papua highway along 4,300 kilometers, which is targeted to be completed in 2018.

“In addition, the contribution of basic infrastructure development from Special Allocated Budget for Public Infrastructure could increase the reduction of the price of goods in Papua, he said. (*/rom)

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