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NEWS UPDATES Asean Affairs   30 September 2013  

Govt pours $278m into Surakarta toll road

Indonesia:The government aims to allocate Rp 3.2 trillion (US$278.4 million) in the form of viability-gap funding for the Surakarta-Mantingan-Ngawi toll road in order to help accelerate the Trans-Java toll-road network linking Jakarta and Surabaya, East Java.

Public Works Minister Djoko Kirmanto said the funding would help with land clearance and the construction of 20.9 kilometers (km) of the total 90 km road.

“We are committed to help construct this toll road because we want the Trans-Java network to be completed by the end of 2014. We are optimistic that this target can be met because [construction on] each of the Trans-Java sections, including the Surakarta-Mantingan-Ngawi stretch, has started,” Djoko said in Jakarta on Friday, adding that Rp 1.7 trillion of the funding was for land acquisition and the remaining Rp 1.5 trillion for construction.

Similar to the Trans-Java network, he said the new road connecting Surakarta and Ngawi would be finished in December next year.

According to the ministry data, 82.69 percent of the total land required for the toll road has been acquired, while the remaining 17.31 percent was expected to be acquired within a month.

“The land acquisition process has been running well and we hope to clear all land areas by the end of this year. This project will improve connectivity across Java, particularly between Central Java and East Java, and it will allow for far greater distribution, both of people and goods,” Djoko added.

He said the government was collaborating with PT Solo Ngawi Java (SNJ), a subsidiary of PT Thiess Contractors Indonesia, to build the road.

SNJ is working on the 69.1-km section with Rp 5.2 trillion ($452.4 million) of investment.

The project is divided into three sections: Boyolali–Karanganyar, Karanganyar–Sragen and Sragen–Mantingan.

Apart from the Surakarta-Mantingan-Ngawi stretch, there are eight sections along the 615-km Trans-Java toll road, seven of which have been under development since 2011.

The sections that are currently being developed include the 116-km Cikampek–Palimanan section; Pemalang–Batang (39 km); Semarang–Surakarta (73 km); Kertosono–Mojokerto (41 km), and Mojokerto–Surabaya (36 km).

Ministry data also shows that the Cikampek–Palimanan (Cipali) toll road, which is being constructed by PT Lintas Marga Sedaya, is expected to be the first section to be finished, as all the necessary land has already been acquired.

The Cipali toll road will be divided into six sections, namely Cikopo–Kalijati (29.12 km); Kalijati–Subang (9.56 km); Subang–Cikedung (31.37 km); Cikedung–Kertajati (17.66 km); Kertajati–Sumberjaya (14.51 km), and Sumberjaya–Palimanan (13.78 km).

People and goods traveling between Jakarta and Cirebon will benefit from the Cipali road as it is estimated travel times will be reduced to 3.5 hours from the current five, which may help reduce the country’s high logistics costs.

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This year in Thailand-what next?

AseanAffairs   04 January 2011
By David Swartzentruber      

It is commonplace in journalism to write two types of articles at the transition point between the year that has passed and the New Year. As this writer qualifies as an “old hand” in observing Thailand with a track record dating back 14 years, it is time take a shot at what may unfold in Thailand in 2011.

The first issue that can’t be answered is the health of Thailand’s beloved King Bhumibol, who is now 83 years old. He is the world's longest reigning monarch, but elaborate birthday celebrations in December failed to mask concern over his health. More






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