Budi Karya Sumadi, Indonesian Minister of Transportation, said the preliminary study into the medium-speed Jakarta-Surabaya railway could be completed before the end of 2016. In a bid to enhance connectivity and curtail logistics costs the government of Indonesia encourages the construction of a medium-speed railway linking Indonesia's capital city of Jakarta (on the western part of Java) to the nation's second-largest city of Surabaya in East Java. The preliminary study was started three weeks ago.
This preliminary study will be used as the basis for the feasibility study that will be conducted by the Agency for the Assessment and Application of Technology (Badan Pengkajian dan Penerapan Teknologi or BPPT) and the government of Japan in 2017. This study will be financed by the Indonesian government and should be completed within a time-span of six months. After completion this feasibility study will be presented to investors. As the Indonesian government has limited funds (in the state budget) for transportation projects, this project is offered to the private sector.
Earlier, Indonesian Coordinating Maritime Affairs Minister Luhut Pandjaitan offered the Jakarta-Surabaya railway construction project to the government of Japan. Minister Sumadi believes that Japanese technology is best suited for this Jakarta-Surabaya railway.However, Indonesia will also offer the project to other countries that have a high degree of expertise in railway construction projects, including China.
It could be that Indonesian officials prefer to hand this project to Japan as the latter was disappointed to see the high-speed Jakarta-Bandung railway project go to China earlier this year.
Currently, it takes about ten hours to travel from Jakarta to Surabaya (and vice versa). However, with a medium-speed of 180-200 kilometers per hour, travel time between both cities can be shortened to below four hours. This (double) railway will also pass Cirebon and Semarang.