Similarly, While the railways in France are good the railways in the French colonies aren't as good.
The government plans to revamp 441 kilometers of southern Java’s railway tracks from Cirebon in West Java to Surabaya, building double tracks the entire way to increase passenger capacity and logistics trains.
Construction is scheduled to begin by the end of next year, once the government has completed the same double-track project for Java’s north coast (Pantura) railway.
Deputy Transportation Minister Bambang Susantono said the project, which will be divided into several sections, was expected to be completed in 2016.
“Double-track railroads along the southern and northern parts of Java will help boost economy and development across the Java Economic Corridor as stated in the MP3EI [Master Plan for the Acceleration and Expansion of Indonesia’s Economic Growth],” Bambang said in Jakarta on Friday.
“Both are very important projects because by having two double-track railways, we will be able to triple economic power on the island [of Java] in the future.”
According to recent data from the ministry’s Railway Directorate General, some of the 441-km southern project already have double tracks but four sections are single track: Cirebon–Prupuk, Purwokerto–Kroya, Kroya–Kutoarjo and Surakarta–Madiun–Surabaya.
The ministry has determined that the investment needed for two of the sections, the 76 km Kroya–Kutoarjo section and the 263 km Surakarta–Madiun–Surabaya section, amounts to Rp 11.3 trillion (US$1.17 billion).
Bambang said the Kroya–Kutoarjo section would be financed by a soft loan from the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) worth Rp 4.5 trillion, while the Surakarta–Madiun–Surabaya section would be financed by the state budget.
The southern double tracks will help ease container traffic and road congestion between Jakarta and Surabaya in the north. “We will have two options for transporting both people and goods [by train] between the two economic centers [Jakarta and Surabaya],” Bambang said.
Ministry data shows that once the double-track line for Cirebon-Kroya is complete, train frequency will double from 52 to 104 per day. The Kroya-Kutoarjo double-track section, meanwhile, will allow an increase from 69 train trips per day to 88.
The ongoing Trans-Java double-track project along the Pantura was 45 percent complete, Bambang said. When finished, the Pantura line is expected to increase existing capacity from 64 trains to 200 trains per day, reducing congestion and damage to roads.
The government plans to implement similar projects in Bali, Batam and Sulawesi. The Batam railway project, worth Rp 2.4 trillion, has been offered to foreign investors, particularly from Russia and Singapore, and is expected to be completed in 2017.
Previously, state-owned railway company PT Kereta Api Indonesia’s president director, Ignasius Jonan, said the number of train passengers would increase by 5 to 10 percent every year despite stronger demand in the country’s aviation industry.
Jonan said people would prefer to travel by train for medium-length journeys that were too short for airplanes, such as Jakarta–Cirebon, Yogyakarta–Purwokerto, Madiun–Surabaya and Yogyakarta–Surabaya.
At least 150 officers from state-owned railway company PT KAI, the Tambora Police Precinct and the Public Order (Satpol PP) removed hundreds of street vendors selling their products by the North Duri railway station's railway tracks in Tambora, West Jakarta, on Wednesday.
PT KAI Greater Jakarta spokesman Mateta Rizalulhaq said that the move was aimed at improving the passengers’ safety while traveling on a train.
“There were around 200 vendors that have been removed. It was very dangerous to sell their products near the railway tracks,” he said as quoted by Antara news wire.
He cited that the Jakarta administration had prepared three areas for the street vendors to resume their operations, namely in Pekojan market in Penjagalan, Perniagaan market in Tambora and Mitra market in Jembatan Lima, West Jakarta.
To prevent the vendors from returning to the railway station, PT KAI will put up a fence around the station on Thursday.
“We hope that after that, the street vendors won’t return,” he said.
The relocation reportedly went smoothly without resistance from the vendors.
The government plans to complete the construction of a 30 kilometer railway project, in North Sumatra’s Sei Mangke economic zone, next year. The project aims to help accelerate economic development in the region
Transportation Ministry spokesman Bambang S. Ervan said the project was very important because it would connect the industrial areas of Sei Mangke and Kuala Tanjung, a new port that is set to assist Belawan.
“The train is expected to transport up to 1.5 million tons of palm products and other commodities, such as rubber, from Sei Mangke to Kuala Tanjung annually,” Bambang told The Jakarta Post in Jakarta on Wednesday.
He said the government had set aside Rp 430 billion (US$44.72 million) for the project. State-owned plantation firm PT Perkebunan Nusantara III (PTPN III) also spent Rp 60 billion ($6.24 million) to improve a 2.5 kilometer piece of track that connects Gunung Bayu and Pelanaan, near the firm’s plantation area.
“We are optimistic that the project will be completed by the end of 2013, because we encountered no financial problems during the construction and the local government has acquired land to support the project,” he said.
The Sei Mangke–Kuala Tanjung railway is set to commence operation in January 2014.
The project was part of the Master Plan for Acceleration and Expansion of Indonesia’s Economic Development (MP3EI) program, which seeks to boost economy in the Sumatra Economic Corridor.
The ministry’s railway director general Tundjung Inderawan signed the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Asahan and Batubara Regencies at the end of last year, he said.
He also added that the project aimed to reduce logistical costs in North Sumatra by up to 30 percent.
PTPN III is currently developing an industrial zone, worth Rp 6.8 trillion, in Sei Mangke area to integrate the upstream and downstream of its palm business.
JAKARTA, Nov. 5 (Xinhua) -- Despite the country's rapid economic growth over the past few years, Indonesia still needs to improve its infrastructure to assure a long-term and sustainable growth, experts here said.
Data released by Indonesia's Central Statistics Agency (BPS) Monday shows Indonesia's gross domestic product (GDP) grew 6.2 percent in the third quarter thanks to the strong domestic consumption and huge inflow of foreign investments despite the global economic slowdown.
Indonesia's foreign direct investment rose 22 percent in the third quarter to 5.9 billion U.S. dollars from one year ago, after posting 30 percent growth at the previous quarter.
The World Bank has earlier forecast Indonesia's GDP growth this year to be 6.1 percent and 6.4 percent in 2013.
Indonesia, a member of G-20, has been experiencing strong economic growth with 5 to 6.5 percent since the 1990's Asian crisis due to a rising middle class and strong domestic consumption.
Southeast's biggest economy was awarded investment grade level by Fitch Ratings in December after 14 years of junk status, and Moody's Investors Service followed in January.
However, Sri Adiningsih, economist and professor at Indonesia' s Gajah Mada University, told Xinhua recently that the country's insufficient and inadequate infrastructure becomes serious impediment for Indonesia to pursue its ambitious growth target.
Indonesia unveiled the Master Plan for the Acceleration and Expansion of Indonesia's Economic Development (MP3EI) last year, aiming to drive the country to be one of the world's 10 biggest economies by 2025 with GDP to reach 4.5 trillion U.S. dollars and the per capita income from the present 3,000 U.S. dollars to 15, 000 U.S. dollars.
"Indonesia needs to work extremely hard on infrastructure development to reduce hurdle to implement key economic policies and achieve its development goal," Sri said.
As a country with big population and rich natural resources, Indonesia could not possibly unleash its full potentials due to poor infrastructure support, Sri said.
Vince Gowan, vice president of Indonesian Chamber of Commerce and Industry (Kadin), said Indonesia's ports, railways, roads, stations and power supply system are in a state of disrepair, lagging far behind its neighbor Malaysia, let alone China.
According to Vince, during Indonesian President Yudhoyono Susilo Bambang's first five-year term, only 125 kilometers of toll roads were built, but China built almost 5,000 kilometers of expressways in 2009 alone.
Poor infrastructure facilities become a bottleneck for Indonesia's economy as it slows down commerce, increase logistical cost and reduce business's profitability, said Pande Radja Silalahi, head of the Department of Economics at Indonesia' s Centre for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS).
"Because of high cost of transportation, Indonesia's coal exporters in Kalimantan prefer to ship to China rather than to Jakarta," the senior economist said.
A report released by World Bank shows Indonesia's position in 2012 Logistics Performance Index at 2.94 in the scale of 5, while its rank is in the position of 59, lagging behind its regional peers such as the Philippines and Vietnam.
Analysts said that inadequate infrastructure may force foreign investors to be more cautious in investing in the country due to the fear of delay in the movement of goods.
Zhang Hui, managing director of Guangshou Group, a China's based Mining company, told Xinhua that the Indonesian government urged them to build smelter and process the raw minerals locally instead of exporting them but infrastructure support in their mining site was almost zero, with no electricity and no supply of cement.
"Infrastructure is a big challenge for us, it is impossible to run a smelter without sustainable power supply and as the government discourages the export of raw minerals, we can do nothing except wait and see,"Zhang said.
The Indonesian government has pledged to improve the country's infrastructure through massive public funding. Lawmakers also approved a land acquisition bill last year expecting to help pave the way for land clearance for infrastructure projects.
Jakarta has planned to spend 240 billion U.S. dollars in the next five years to boost the country's infrastructure and improve connectivity and the movement of goods throughout the archipelago.
Currently, Indonesia's ratio of infrastructure spending to gross domestic product stands at less than 5 percent, relatively low compared to that of its neighbors.
Infrastructure projects in Indonesia often face long delays in implementation due to weak preparation, absence of viable gap funding mechanism, corruption and a complex land acquisition process.
A report by the International Monetary Fund (IMF) on the Indonesian economy released last August pointed out that only 19 percent of planned capital spending had been disbursed in the first half of this year.
Pande said Indonesia needs to improve its system of governance. "Local officials, for example, have the power to block central government's projects because of the highly decentralized political system," he explained.
Pande said that getting land and local permits in Indonesia are still a big challenge despite the approval of the long-awaited land acquisition law.
Indonesia desperately wants to grow like China and learn from China's experience, especially when the country becomes the second- fastest growing economy only after China this year.
However, poor infrastructure, such as roads, ports, electricity and communications, threatens Indonesia's emerging status, according to analysts.
About 200 employees from various state-owned companies rallied in front of the House of Representatives building on Monday morning in support of State-Owned Enterprises Minister Dahlan Iskan.
The demonstrators were employees of PT KAI railway company, Pindad arms manufacturer, Dirgantara aircraft maker and PT Kimia Farma pharmaceutical company.
"We fully support Pak Dahlan in his move to fight lawmakers who [attempt to] extort money from state-owned companies," Fonny from PT Kimia Farma said.
Dahlan was in a meeting with members of the House's ethics council, during which he was expected to disclose the names of lawmakers who reportedly demanded payment from executives of state-owned companies in exchange for having their companies’ budgets approved.
House ethics council chairman M. Prakosa previously told reporters that the council would investigate claims made by Dahlan.
"We will severely punish all lawmakers if proven guilty. We promise we will not take sides with lawmakers or their political parties," the Democratic Party of Struggle (PDI-P) said on the sidelines of the meeting.(iwa)
The government is planning to reclassify the proposed Sunda Strait Bridge (SSB) as a solicited project to end confusion surrounding its legal basis, a senior minister says.
“There is support for classifying the SSB as a solicited project so that better preparations can be made for its planning and its feasibility study,” Deputy Finance Minister Mahendra Siregar told reporters here on Tuesday.
Under Presidential Regulation No. 67/2005 on public/private partnerships (PPP), public infrastructure projects can be designated as unsolicited or solicited.
An unsolicited project, according to the regulation, must be initiated by a private entity that must submitted to the government a well-defined proposal and a completed feasibility study. If the government decides to proceed with the unsolicited project, it cannot provide guarantees or financing to the private entity.
On the other hand, solicited projects are proposed by the government in its mid-and long-term infrastructure development programs.
Finance Minister Agus Martowardojo previous said that there was confusion surrounding construction of the SSB bridge, whose initial cost estimates have topped a staggering Rp 100 trillion (US$10.39 billion).
While the bridge is currently classified as an unsolicited project, official proposals for the mega-project have been circulating since the mid-1960s, when the bridge was conceived during president Sukarno’s tenure.
To clarify the bridge’s status, Agus has proposed revising Presidential Instruction No. 86/2011 on the Sunda Strait Strategic Infrastructure Region (KSISS).
The KSISS is a regional development program in the Sunda Strait between that also includes the bridge.
Mahendra said that the government may also appoint a state-owned firm to complete the feasibility study for the project.
Coordinating Economic Minister Hatta Rajasa said that the consortium that submitted the unsolicited proposal for the bridge could still be involved in completing the feasibility study, provided tha the government appoints a state-owned
enterprise to conduct it.
“We are still formulating the scheme on how to assign this job [feasibility study] to a state-owned enterprise,” Hatta said.
If a state-owned enterprise works on the feasibility study, the KSISS regulation may need to be revised.
Under the regulation, the initiator, PT Graha Banten Lampung Sejahtera (GBLS), a consortium led by tycoon Tomy Winata’s Artha Graha Network, has been mandated to carry out the feasibility study.
Separately, GBLS president director Agung Prabowo said that the consortium would wait for the government’s final decision. “We will comply and maintain our loyalty to any official decision made by the government on the SSB project,” Agung told The Jakarta Post via text message.
The SSB has been proposed to connect Java and Sumatra, two of the most economically prosperous regions in the nation, through Banten and Lampung.
The bridge is planned to be at least 29 kilometers long — six times the length of the Suramadu bridge that connects Java and Madura — and come with six vehicle lanes, double railway tracks and several motorcycle lanes.
The first railway lines in Indonesia was built in 1876 to connect the plantations in Yogyakarta and Surakarta with the harbor at Semarang.
Amazingly, it was built to European standard gauge.
The first railway lines in Indonesia was built in 1876 to connect the plantations in Yogyakarta and Surakarta with the harbor at Semarang.
Amazingly, it was built to European standard gauge.
Thanks for the correction.
Not really amazing that it was standard gauge, it was built by/for the Dutch.
Actually it was built earlier in 1864, and began to see service in 1867.
I would say amazing, because now we have none of them in operation, whereas our neighbors that previously didn't have standard gauge lines now have extensive network of standard gauge lines!
Kalimantan’s coal railway project linking Puruk Cahu and Lupak Dalam in Central Kalimantan is set to begin in the first quarter of 2013 to cope with the shortage of road transportation facilities in the province.
National Development Planning Board (Bappenas)’s public private partnership (PPP) director Bastary Indra Pandji said four investors: Japan’s Itochu, China Railway, Bakrie Indo Infrastructure and Dubai’s MEP had submitted their project proposals to the provincial government.
“By looking at the progress today, we are optimistic the winner of the tender will be announced early next year and that the project will begin in the first quarter [of 2013],” Bastary said on the sidelines of Trans Kalimantan Railway Project Review in Jakarta on Tuesday.
The 300-kilometer tracks will connect three coal centers in the province: Puruk Cahu of Murung Raya regency, Bangkuang of South Barito regency and Lupak Dalam of Kapuas regency.
“Previously, the project was aimed to only connect Puruk Cahu and Bangkuang. But, we decided to expand it to Lupak Dalam because it will help the province transport more coal,” he said.
He said the Rp 20 trillion (US$2.08 billion) project, one of major infrastructure projects to be developed under the PPP scheme, is scheduled for completion at the end of 2017. The railway will have the capacity to transport 20 million tons of coal annually.
The Central Kalimantan government chose to develop railways since infrastructure like roads and rivers were not enough to support the government’s aim to further develop the coal industry, he said.
In addition, Transportation Ministry’s railway director general Tun-djung Inderawan said there are 10 railway projects in Kalimantan that will be developed under the PPP scheme until 2020. They include Banjarmasin–Pelaihari–Batakan and Tanjung–Martapura–Banjarbaru–Banjarmasin Airport in South Kalimantan; Balikpapan–Samarinda and Tanjung Redep–Lubuk Tutung in East Kalimantan, and an intra-provincial project to include Muara Teweh (Central Kalimantan)–Samarinda (East Kalimantan).
He said that currently, respective provincial governments, Bappenas and investors interested in the projects were carrying out a feasibility study on the projects.
“We are hoping that railway infrastructure projects in East Kalimantan and Central Kalimantan can be completed by 2020,” Tundjung said.
The Puruk Cahu and Lupak Dalam railway, and the 10 railway projects will be part of the Trans Kalimantan Railway Master Plan that will cover 49 important sections. Total investment for the projects is estimated to cost about Rp 600 trillion ($62.4 billion). Twenty out of 49 sections have the potential to be developed under the PPP scheme, while others are suitable to be built by private companies. One of the projects that will be built by private companies is the railway connecting East and Central Kalimantan.
Russia’s state railway firm Joint Stock Company (JSC) Russian Railways will build a railway line in East Kalimantan to deliver coal in an investment of approximately $2.4 billion, funded by private investors and Russian state development bank Vnesheconombank. In the second phase of the project, the Russian company would connect the railroad to Murung Raya regency in Central Kalimantan with a 60-kilometer line.
Besides the Russian project, Middle East Coal Holdings of the United Arab Emirates will also build a 135-kilometer railway from Muara Wahau to Lubuk Tutung Port in Bengalon, Kutai Timur regency in East Kalimantan to transport coal, with a total investment of Rp 5 trillion ($560 million), he said.
Neo-colonialism is probably the key word for Akiq AW, the exhibition curator appointed by the Langgeng Art Foundation (LAF), to read and present a complete framework for the photography project “The Sweet and Sour Story of Sugar”.
The show itself was initiated by Noorderlicht, known to consistently hold photography exhibitions in the Netherlands. As the exhibition’s title implies, the project is a photographic investigation into globalization through the first commodity ever traded across continents: sugar.
The exhibition at LAF’s two main galleries in Yogyakarta that opened on Nov. 9 and runs to Jan. 20, 2013, comprises the works of six photographers commissioned by Noorderlicht to record the current condition of the sugar industry along with hundreds of colonial-era photographs compiled from various archives in Europe.
As the initiator, Noorderlicht provided artistic material for the exhibition and collaborated with local partners in Suriname, Indonesia and Brazil to exhibit the project in their respective countries.
What is interesting is that Noorderlicht treats the project as open source. That is, all local partners and curators are free to use all materials to create an exhibition, even to give the photographs new contexts and paradigms considered to be the most appropriate to the local situation.
For the exhibition in Yogyakarta, Akiq collaborated with colleagues Angki Purbandono and Wimo Ambala Bayang, both members of an artist’s collective that promotes contemporary photography known as MES56.
Keen observation and wide experience in organizing exhibitions are evident in their decision to divide the whole project into two big sections: the new photography assignments and the old, colonial photography. The division is considered a way to focus the audience and allow them to compare photographs and the ways they were taken. It also serves as a way to present the point that Western photographers nowadays have the tendency to perceive locals as mere objects, and in this sense, are no different than their colonial predecessors — which then becomes merely the neo-colonial gaze.
They frame the exhibition into an act of seeing and being seen, and how there will always be an unbalanced presentation between the two. It is about how in the colonial photographs, audiences can see a very distinct social structure between the colonizers and the colonized, or the West and the East.
“And a similar presentation was still felt in the photographs taken by these six photographers,” said Akiq. And so, he argued, “This is not just about photography, but also how Westerners perceive us.”
This idea does not come from thin air. Besides observing and studying the materials provided by Noorderlicht, they voiced their objections about the lack of local photographers commissioned to partake in the project to document the condition of the sugar industry from a local perspective. “There was a lack of proximity between the photographers and the issues they explored,” said Akiq.
On the second floor gallery, visitors were presented with newly commissioned works by James Whitlow Delano (Japan/US), Alejandro Chaskielberg (Argentina), Ed Kashi (US), Francesco Zizola (Italy), Carl de Keyzer (Belgium) and Tomasz Tomaszewski (Poland).
The photographers recorded social realities and various elements of the sugar industry in the present, including the current state of factories, the life of immigrants and workers with the market changing so much, and also the story of how the sugar industry has become a part of the cultural heritage in the form of consumption and rituals.
These photographs are then given four main contexts by the exhibition curators. One hundred and eighty of 300 photos are represented in the form of an index accompanied by text, allowing each photograph to tell a different and specific story.
The first context shows the legacy of the sugar industry in the colonial era. It consist of photographs by Chaskielberg showing the remaining sugar factories in Suriname, places that once thrived and generated a lot of income and are now overgrown with weeds. The living situation of the descendants of sugar factory workers was documented by Delano. His pictures show descendants from Java, India, Africa and China: the four major population groups in Suriname. The second is about how sugar is handled. On one side, Tomaszewski shows how sugar materialized in rituals carried out by the Javanese before the production season. The annual festival has a parade and the sacrificing of bulls and cows for a good harvest.
From de Keyzer’s work, viewers can see that on the other side of the world, sugar is a mere commodity, discussed in numbers at EU parliament meetings.
Comparisons of sugar processing technology are the third context, with technological development affecting workers and depicted in photographs. For instance, the technology used in Indonesian factories is no different from 100 years ago and is almost similar to the conditions in southern Brazil.
The last issue addressed is the exploration of sugar usage and consumption in the form of various products such as candy, cakes and fast food.
The colonial photography section is in the basement gallery. After being carefully constructed, the section offers hundreds of photographs divided into countries of origin, but the section lacks the criticism first offered to the audience through the four main issues related to the modern photographs. The old photos are displayed merely according to subject matter or based on the similarities of visual character.
Despite all that, “The Sweet and Sour Story of Sugar” at LAF is captivating. Most of the audience engagement comes from the visual pleasure of looking at great artistic material and the way the exhibition curators frame the works. Also, for the first time exhibited in Indonesia, the colonial-era photographs offer fresh perspectives on our history. The contrast they offer and the story behind the images can inspire a viewer to think more deeply about the sugar industry and how it has stirred our social history.
The open source formula is one of the most interesting elements of the project. With that being said, it will be very exciting to also see how the same project will be seen and presented by Ruangrupa, an artist’s collective in Jakarta.
Will they consider the colonial gaze as well? Or will they be captivated by the nostalgia some of the photographs evoke? Or will the experience something else entirely?
The Sweet and Sour Story of Sugar
Langgeng Art Foundation Nov. 9 – Jan. 20, 2013 Jl. Suryodiningratan 37 Yogyakarta Open daily: 11 a.m. – 6 p.m. (Mon.-Sat.) ruangrupa at Kunstkring Art Gallery Nov. 23 – Dec. 14, 2012 Jl. Teuku Umar No. 1 Jakarta Open daily: 10 a.m. – 5 p.m. (Mon.-Fri.) 11 a.m. – 5 p.m. (Sat.-Sun.)
Discussion (in Indonesian and English) “Sugar Stories in Indonesia” Sun., Dec. 2, 2 p.m. Kunstkring Gallery Jakarta Speakers Andi Achdian (historian and editor of Loka magazine), Martin Suryajaya (author on philosophy and editor indoprogress.com), Jompet Kuswidananto (artist) Moderator: Leonhard Bartolomeus (author and art researcher)
No train from Bogor in the next few days
The Jakarta Post, Jakarta
Thu, November 22 2012, 2:05 PM
Electric train (KRL) passengers from Bogor must find another mode of transportation to reach Jakarta, as the broken railway, which was caused by a landslide in Cilebut Wednesday afternoon, will undergo repairs that could take at least two days to complete.
Train operator PT KAI spokesman Sugeng Priyono said that his company would try to operate one rail track after two days of repairs.
Deputy head of the Bogor train station Enjang Syarif Budiman, however, said that all repairs could take up to seven days. “There are many things that we have to fix, including strengthening the contour of the land,” he said as quoted by Antara news wire.
“We need time to fix the problem, but we will try to do it as fast as we can,” he said.
The Bogor station records 35,000 KRL passengers per day. Most of them are workers who reside in Bogor, but work in the capital, or vendors who run businesses in several markets like Tanah Abang.
On Wednesday, Enjang said that the station had canceled 98 train schedules. Material loss reached Rp 128 million (US$13,280), he added.
Heavy rains caused a landslide at the 45-kilometer point of the railway in Cilebut, Bogor, Wednesday afternoon. Due to the landslide, with 200-meters in length and 35-meters in depth, the railway between the two stations hung for 75- meters and four electrical poles along the railway were toppled, said State railway.
Since then, all commuter trains from Jakarta to Bogor could only reach Bojong Gede train station. The following day, hundreds of commuters from Bogor had to go to Bojong Gede to take a train to Jakarta.
On Oct. 5, the landslide in Cilebut also disrupted the train schedule. The train operator took one day to normalize the track. (han/lfr)
State railway company PT KAI inked a deal on Wednesday with online ticketing website tiket.com to make it easier for train passengers to order tickets through the Internet.
Train passengers are now able to order tickets for all the three classes of long-distance trains (economy, business and executive) through online reservations up to 90 days prior to their departure.
The deal was signed by KAI director of commerce Sulistyo Wimbo Hardjito and tiket.com managing director Gaery Undarsa in Jakarta and witnessed by Tourism and Creative Economy Minister Mari Elka
“This service will certainly make it easier for passengers to use train services without being annoyed by ticket scalpers,” tiket.com transportation director Dimas Surya said in a statement.
The market for online travel services has great potential in Indonesia, with tiket.com predicting that the business segment will grow 30 to 40 percent annually. Payment for any online purchase of train tickets can be conducted through online banking, bank transfers or by credit card.
Train operator PT KAI said that it might take a month for it to repair the railway tracks that were displaced by a landslide in Cilebut, Bogor on Wednesday, stranding commuters heading to the capital from Bogor station.
KAI spokesman Sugeng Priyono said on Thursday that the company would try to operate one rail track after a week of repairs, but it would not take the risk of rushing to operate the track as it might worsen the landslide. “We need approximately a week to repair one rail track and a month to repair both tracks,” Sugeng told The Jakarta Post.
On Wednesday afternoon, heavy rains caused a landslide at the 45-kilometer point of the railway in Cilebut. Due to the landslide, which was 200 meters in length and 35 meters in depth, the railway between the two stations hung for 71 meters, and four electrical poles along the railway were toppled over.
The landslide also buried 19 houses that were located under the cliff where the railway broke.
KAI director Ignasius Jonan said that the company would give donations to residents whose houses had been buried by the landslide.
“We will check whether these [buried] houses are legal or not. For residents who built their houses legally, we will not only give them aid but also help them to rebuild their houses,” Jonan said as quoted by Antara news agency. He added that the residents who did not have legal documents would receive half donations.
Deputy head of the Bogor train station, Enjang Syarif Budiman, said that the station had canceled 98 train schedules with material losses reaching Rp 128 million (US$13,280).
Bogor station receives 35,000 commuter passengers per day, with most of them being workers who work in the capital, or vendors who run businesses in several markets like Tanah Abang in West Jakarta.
Since the incident, all commuter trains from Jakarta to Bogor could only reach Bojong Gede train station. The following day, hundreds of commuters from Bogor had to go to Bojong Gede to take a train to Jakarta.
Commuter Endang Sri Wardhani, an employee of a private company in Jakarta, said that the rail operator should provide a shuttle bus from Bogor station to Bojong Gede station to make it easier for daily passengers to reach Jakarta.
Endang said that she had to take a very crowded bus from Bogor to Jakarta on Thursday morning along with the other disappointed commuters.
“The cost of commuting by bus between Bogor and Jakarta is more expensive than by train,” she said. “It would be nice if KAI provided a shuttle bus from Bogor station to Bojong Gede station during the month of repairs, so we can still commute.”
Commuter Fahmi Fadillah, a student at the University of Indonesia said that he had no choice but to rely on a free ride from a friend to get to his campus in Depok, West Java on Thursday morning.
“I haven’t decided yet whether I will use a bus or another mode of transportation tomorrow, but I hope the repairs won’t take that long,” he said.
The train serving the Jakarta-Bogor route had been facing repeated service disruption in the last few months despite the recent increase in commuter train fares.
On Oct. 4, a train serving Bogor-Jakarta derailed at the same station, leaving a 20-centimeter section of the track damaged.
No casualties were reported, but at least 40 schedules were disrupted following the derailment.
On Oct. 10, another Jakarta-Bogor commuter train was struck by electricity due to heavy rain and lightning. The incident interfered with the railway’s signal system, with commuters’ journeys lasting from rush hour until late into the evening.
According to the train operator, all women-only train schedules have been canceled during the repair period of the broken railway in Cilebut, to substitute trains that have been halted at Bogor station. (nad/han)
State-owned railway company PT KAI said on Monday that bad weather was slowing down repairs on broken railway tracks in Cilebut, Bogor, which has cut connection to the Bogor station.
“The repairs are affected by many factors, including heavy rain,” KAI spokesman Sugeng Priyono told The Jakarta Post on Monday. “The more rain, the longer the work will take.”
The railway operator previously said that repairs might take a month to complete.
But, with rain pouring down in the area almost incessantly, it might take longer for the company to resume its service, Sugeng said.
He said that the company began repairing the tracks last Wednesday, when heavy rain caused a landslide at the 45-kilometer point of the double-track railway in Cilebut, dislocating the tracks and toppling four electrical poles.
While working on repairs, the weather was quite extreme, Sugeng said. “If this continues, the workers cannot work. We have to ask them to stop working because it is dangerous,” he said. “Moreover, the soil could turn into mud if we keep working on it, which will create a longer delay instead.”
On Monday, the company tested one of the repaired tracks by letting a train pass through it from Bojong Gede station to Cilebut.
Officials found that the soil was still unstable and that further work was needed to fix the drainage and capillary tube.
Deputy Transportation Minister Bambang Susantono, who inspected the trial of the repaired track, ordered KAI to speed up work and to ensure that the track is safe. The deputy minister gave the company a two-day deadline.
“We will install a soil movement monitoring device to see whether there are still any substantial movements or not,” the minister said.
Endra from the Bandung Institute of Technology’s (ITB) soil mechanics laboratory said that the land contour should be checked to make sure that the track was safe for usage. “To perform the test, we should first hold a reconstruction to see the initial land condition before the landslide,” he said.
KAI initially planned to begin using one track on Tuesday, but the track was not ready yet.
Thousands of commuters heading to Jakarta from the Bogor station were affected by the incident. The station records 35,000 electric train (KRL) passengers per day. Most of them are workers who reside in Bogor, but work in the capital, or vendors who run businesses in several markets like Tanah Abang.
Since the incident, some passengers have alternatively taken the bus to get to Jakarta, or go to Bojong Gede station, the last stop on the Jakarta-Bogor route.
The train serving the Jakarta-Bogor route had been facing repeated service disruption, sparking criticism from commuters who demand better service following its decision to increase fares.
On Oct. 4, a train serving Bogor-Jakarta derailed at the same station, leaving a 20-centimeter section of the track damaged.
No casualties were reported, but at least 40 train schedules were disrupted following the derailment.
On Oct. 10, another Jakarta-Bogor commuter train was struck by electricity due to heavy rain and lightning. The incident interfered with the railway’s signal system, with commuters’ journeys lasting from rush hour until late into the evening. (fzm)
The Association of Train Passengers (Aspeka) threatened to sue state-owned train operator PT Kereta Api Indonesia (KAI) and PT KAI Commuter Jabodetabek (KCJ) for their substandard services.
Aspeka chairman Ahmad Safrudin said that there had been no significant improvements in either operators services for quite a long time.
“Passengers have complained about KAI’s substandard services for a long time — I do not think the complaints have been answered well. If there is still no response after this, we will sue them,” he said after submitting a list of unacceptable services to the KCJ office on Tuesday.
He said that Aspeka had listed several issues that should be addressed seriously.
Included on the list of issues that needed to be urgently improved were problems such as crowded station platforms packed full of vendors, audio systems that are not in working order, a lack of facilities for the disabled, frequent delays and a worrying lack of safety equipment, Ahmad said.
“It has been a common problem that trains are often late because the railway signals are broken, or that many passengers have passed out because the train is too crowded and the air conditioning is broken,” he said.
In addition, Ahmad said that despite the recent fare increase there had been continued service disruptions.
“It has been two months since the new fare was taken into effect, however, we have seen no improvements in the services yet,” he said.
In October, KAI increased the commuter train fares by Rp 2,000 (20 US cents), instead of showing improvements, incidents have continued to occur ever since.
The latest incident occurred last week in which a railway track was displaced after a landslide in Cilebut, Bogor. The incident has stranded thousands commuters who regularly commute to the capital from Bogor station.
A similar incident also took place at the same station last month when a train serving Bogor-Jakarta derailed, leaving a 20-centimeter section of the track damaged.
Aspeka legal representative Lukmanul Hakim said that the substandard services violate many laws, including the Ministerial Decree No. 9/2011 on minimum service standards, which clearly stipulates commuter train services, including train schedules, punctuality and the number of trains to be operated every day.
Lukmanul said that if there was no response in 14 days, they would take the company to court.
Besides demanding that KAI immediately improve their services, Ahmad also expected the operator to apply an e-ticketing system to prevent misuse.
“We should start to use an e-ticketing system to ensure efficiency,” he said.
KCJ spokesperson Eva Chairunisa said that the company would carefully study the demands.
“We cannot tell you yet when we will answer. We will discuss it first,” she said.
The company has previously acknowledged that train services are sometimes delayed or canceled and sometimes face operational difficulties but that they always try to provide compensation such as free tickets for commuters.
From street children to railway children.
The Jakarta Post, Jakarta
Tue, November 27 2012, 11:23 AM
Kartini School, a school established for street children, has a long history of evictions. The school is now to have a new permanent home in Kebon Sayur, Kampung Badan, North Jakarta.
State-owned railway company PT KAI has donated a 240 -square-meter plot of land only 100 meters away from the previous location.
One of the founders of Kartini School, Sri “Rian” Irianingsih said the school had to be relocated last July when PT KAI, also the owner of their previous location, decided to build a warehouse.
Rian told beritajakarta.com at the ground breaking on Monday that the school would be housed in a semi-permanent building consisting if a main room with three bathrooms and one kitchen. The facility is expected to be ready within the next three months.
“We only really need one room, where we can monitor all students from all grades,” she told kompas.com.
Besides PT KAI, the Jakarta Police and private carrier PT Sriwijaya Air have also helped fund the project.
The school, established by twin philanthropists Sri “Rosi” Rosiati and Rian to educate children from impoverished families, has had to move from four times since it was inaugurated in 1996. (cor/swd)
Jakarta-Bogor train still going nowhere
The Jakarta Post, Bogor
Wed, November 28 2012, 1:17 PM
The Jakarta - Bogor railway will not operate normally on Wednesday, even after the track connecting the two cities has been repaired. Service was expected to return to normal on Tuesday.
As State-owned railway company PT KAI official blamed safety issues. PT KAI Greater Jakarta spokesman Mateta Rizalulhaq said the company needed to make sure the rail bed was solid, but refused to say when services would be back to normal, claiming that bad weather might affect repairs to the track.
“If there is no shifting of land after the trial, we will resume operations,” he told tempo.co. “Passenger safety is our main priority.”
Technicians are now moving electrical poles on the line between Cilbeut and Bojonggede as the track has shifted 40 centimeters away from the previous location.
Three trains (without passengers) that were trapped in Bogor station have now successfully returned to Jakarta.
The track was damaged by a landslide last week. Thousands of suburban commuters who work in Jakarta have been affected by the incident. (cor/swd)
The Jakarta-Bogor train started to run again today during peak hours in the morning and evening, a week after the landslide which cut the line.
PT KAI spokesman Mateta Rizalulhaq said that from Thursday the train would operate between 04:25 a.m. and 8:30 a.m. from Bogor station, and from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. from Jakarta to allow the company to complete the repairs. At least one more day is needed to complete the whole process.
Twelve trains carried nearly 5,000 commuters from Bogor on Thursday morning.
The landslide stranded thousands of commuters heading to Jakarta from Bogor. The station normally serves up to 35,000 passengers per day. (cor/swd
A custom law expert has warned state-owned mining company PT Bukit Asam (PT BA) to be mindful in acquiring land to build its 280-kilometer double track railway project scheduled to start next year, so as to prevent it from creating conflict in the community.
Lampung custom law expert Rizani Puspawijaya said over the weekend that the project should be conducted by taking into consideration local issues, as any careless land acquisition moves could lead to conflict.
“Railway track developments that are conducted today are different from those conducted during the Dutch colonial era,” said Rizani, adding that the existing railway tracks in Sumatra, especially the one in Lampung, were built by the Dutch in 1905.
At that time, Rizani said, the project was carried out with the agreement of local community figures. There was no need for land acquisitions because the people whose land was included in the project had given their support. “They saw a clear interest for the people,” Rizani said.
The land acquisition process, he added, started with a deliberation meeting with heads of the custom communities in Lampung. The project only started when these communities agreed.
“No compensation was given at that time. But people were happy because trains would pass through their regions. They were also employed in the development project,” he said.
PT BA plans to build 280-kilometer double railway tracks connecting Tanjung Enim (South Sumatra) and Tarahan Port in Bandar Lampung (Lampung) to transport coal.
Lampung Governor Sjachroedin ZP confirmed that the license to develop the track had been given to PT BA several months ago. “PT BA initially wanted us to cover the land acquisition, but eventually agreed that the investors would take care of it,” he said.
Scheduled to start in September next year, with operations beginning in 2017, the track is expected to improve the company’s transporting capacity to South Sumatra through Lampung, as well as reducing traffic jams in downtown Bandar Lampung.
PT BA operational director Heri Supriyanto said that once the double track was already in operation, the company would be able to increase its transporting capacity to between 25 million tons and 50 million tons of coal per year.
As coaches carrying the coal go from Natar Station in South Lampung to Tarahan Port through the downtown Bandar Lampung area, they are often blamed for causing traffic congestion in the city.
To realize the US$1.7 billion project, PT BA is cooperating with PT Transpacific Railway Infrastructure and China Railway Engineering.
The general manager of port operator PT Pelindo II’s Panjang branch, Doso Agung, expressed support for the project, saying that it would increase export capacity through Panjang Port. Doso said that CPO from South Sumatra and Lampung so far had been transported to Panjang on trucks, as with the transportation of non-PT BA coal products.
This, he said, was time consuming, expensive and caused damage to the roads the heavy-loaded trucks passed over. “Transporting commodities by train is more economical and causes less damage to the road,” Doso said.
The plan to develop a railway track for a tourist train in Bali will soon fold and be filed away due to a study conducted by the state-owned railway company, PT KAI, revealing it to be impossible due to the cost and technical issues.
“The study demonstrates that it is not feasible to build a railway system in Bali. The construction costs would be very high. For the time being, the plan, unveiled in 2009, must be postponed,” explained Bali Governor Made Mangku Pastika during a monthly meeting in Bedha village in Tabanan on Saturday.
The governor admitted that he had not received the written results of PT KAI’s feasibility study, but he acknowledged that the plan would be too difficult to realize.
The idea to construct a railway system in Bali first emerged in 2009 based on the premise that Bali had no integrated public transportation system to enable tourists to reach any corner of Bali, including its faraway villages, outside Kuta, Sanur and the southern parts of Bali.
Despite the study’s result, the provincial administration is still interested in continuing with the plan through private investment.
“We are hoping to establish a public-private partnership to develop the necessary infrastructure to realize the plan. Some potential investors from China showed their interest in the project,” Pastika said.
JAKARTA, Dec. 7 (Xinhua) -- Four passengers of a minibus were killed when the minibus collided with a speeding train in North Sumatra province in Indonesia on Friday.
The accident took place at around 10 a.m. local time when the minibus carrying eight people ran through a road-railway intersection without crossing barricade in the town of Tebing Tinggi in the subdistrict of Rambutan, approximately 80 kilometers southeast of the North Sumatra capital of Medan.
A Putri Deli train traveling at high speed passed through at the same time, slamming the car and toppling it before pushing the wreck to the side of the railway, the largest news portal detik. com reported.
Four of the Suzuki's passengers died on the spot, while four others were severely injured and immediately rushed to nearby Sri Pamela Hospital.
They were reportedly on their way to a wedding reception when the accident took place.
As the Christmas and New Year holidays approach, many Indonesians have already bought tickets for their holiday travels and are counting down the days to the big break.
Many will return to their hometowns but others want to simply escape from the bustling capital city to exotic destinations.
Christina Sitanggang, a 28-year-old working for a private company in Central Jakarta, said that her family had been planning their Christmas holiday since early September and had bought airline tickets to Medan, North Sumatra.
“We have our tickets, we are ready to go, and we cannot wait to arrive in Medan because Christmas and New Year are the best time of the whole year as we spend it with our extended family. I do not mind spending millions of rupiah as long as I can meet [the family],” Christina told The Jakarta Post on Friday.
She said that she spent almost Rp 14 million (US$1,456) on Lion Air Jakarta–Medan return tickets for five people. She will be leaving Jakarta on the night of Dec. 23 and returning on New Year’s Day.
It is not only Christians who have prepared for their holidays a few months ahead of Christmas and the New Year, but also Muslims.
Farah Syabila, a 23-year-old medical student in one of the city’s private universities, said that she would go to the extremely popular tourist spots of Bali and Lombok at the end of December with her cousins and friends to welcome in the New Year.
She said that she had bought her Garuda Indonesia Jakarta–Bali, and Wings Air Bali–Lombok, tickets in mid-July with a total price tag of
Rp 4.6 million. “I have been setting aside almost half of my monthly allowance since July for this holiday. I think I will also use some of my savings to buy souvenirs for my parents,” she said.
Local airlines have announced they will provide additional seats to meet the surge in passenger traffic during the holidays.
National flag carrier Garuda Indonesia said that it would provide 11,000 extra seats for travelers from Dec. 22 to Jan. 7, 2013. President director Emirsyah Satar said the extra seats would be on flights from Jakarta to Yogyakarta; Padang, West Sumatra; Denpasar, Bali; Singapore and Hong Kong. “If the demand increases, we will add even more extra seats because we have implemented a flexible response policy that allows us to add flights on any route during the peak season,” Emirsyah said.
In addition, the country’s largest low-cost carrier Lion Air and its feeder Wings Air have committed to providing 30,000 extra seats during the holiday.
General affairs director Edward Sirait said the extra seats would be provided from the airline’s hubs in Jakarta and Surabaya, East Java.
From Jakarta, additional seats are available to Denpasar, Medan, Manado, Ambon, Yogyakarta, Surakarta, Semarang and Surabaya. From Surabaya, Lion Air and Wings will provide more seats to Denpasar, Balikpapan, Banjarmasin, Makassar and Kupang.
New low-cost carrier Citilink Indonesia also plans to add more flights from Jakarta to Denpasar and Medan during the holiday.
Citilink was able to increase its frequencies because it would take delivery of two new Airbus A320s in mid December, increasing its fleet to 21 aircraft, vice president of communications and marketing Aristo Kristandyo said.
“We will be able to increase our seat capacity from the current 12,000 to 17,000 seats daily in December,” Aristo said.
State-owned railway company PT KAI spokesman Sugeng Priyono said that the firm was set to add 4,568 more seats from Jakarta to Cirebon and Bandung, West Java and Surakarta, Central Java from Dec. 20 to Jan. 6, 2013.
State-owned railway company PT KAI said on Sunday that the track in Cilebut on the Jakarta-Bogor route was 80 percent ready and would be all set in the next few days.
Spokesman Mateta Rijalulhaq said that the time required to complete the repairs depended on the weather, which had hampered the process since the landslide last month.
“We still need some tryouts to make sure the track is completely safe,” Mateta said, as quoted by tempo.co.
On Nov. 25, heavy rains caused a landslide at Kilometer 45, which affected a 71-meter stretch between Cilebut and Bojong Gede stations.
The landslide toppled four electrical poles along the section and buried 19 houses that near the tracks.
The Jakarta-Bogor train started running again on Nov. 29, using only one track during peak hours.