Govt Boosts Infrastructure Development to Catch Up With Other Countries: President Jokowi
Date 15 Februari 2019
The Indonesian Government in the last four and half years has been paying attention to infrastructure development to reduce gap with the neighboring countries, according to President Joko Jokowi Widodo.
“We are behind our neighboring countries (in terms of infrastructure development),” the President said in his remarks at the opening of the 51st Tanwir Conference of the second largest Muslim organization in Indonesia Muhammadiyah in Bengkulu, Friday (15/2).
The President added that when Indonesia built Jagorawi Toll Road in 1978, it became a benchmark for several neighboring countries such as Malaysia, Vietnam, Thailand, and the Philippines. However, in the next 40 years, he added, Indonesia can only build 780-kilometer toll road, while China and Malaysia have 280,000-kilometer toll roads and 1,800-kilometer toll roads respectively.
The problem in toll road construction, according to the President, is land acquisition as several plots of land belong to government agencies. He pointed out the construction of Balikpapan-Samarinda toll road as an example. The project was hampered for more than nine years due to land issues involving Ministry of the Environment and Forestry and the Indonesian National Defense Forces (TNI). The problem was later solved after the President stepped in the process, he said.
President Jokowi went on to say that another reason for infrastructure development is to reduce logistics cost, which is higher than those in Singapore and Malaysia.
Furthermore, the President added that the Government also pays attention to village infrastructure by allocating Rp187 trillion for village development, including 191,000 km of village roads, 58,000 irrigation system, 8,900 village markets, clean water, sanitation and other projects. (FID/JAY/ES)
Translated by: Ridwan Ibadurrohman
Edited by: Ersan Pamungkas