China building high-speed rail network in Indonesia, delivers first train cars

China delivered the first set of Chinese high-speed rail carriages for Indonesia’s first high-speed rail network, which was built under China’s “One Belt, One Road” infrastructure initiative. The first trucks have arrived at the Port of Jakarta and will travel 142.3 kilometers (88.4 miles) on the US$5.5 billion rail line to be operated by PT Kereta Cepat Indonesia-China, a joint venture under construction by four state-owned enterprises in Indonesia The China Railway International Co Ltd joint venture said the trains would be the fastest in Southeast Asia.

The railway line connecting Jakarta with the city of Bandung in West Java province is part of China’s “One Belt, One Road” infrastructure initiative. Travel time between the two cities is expected to be reduced from the current three hours to about 40 minutes. The eight trucks and one inspection train that arrived on Friday were handed over by CRRC Qingdao Sifang Co., Ltd. Design and build.

“The arrival of this series of high-speed trains is good news for Indonesia, showing that Indonesia can compete with other developed countries,” said Kartika Wijoatmojo, deputy minister of state-owned enterprises.

Construction of the Jakarta-Bandung line began in January 2016 and is planned as part of a 750-kilometer (465-mile) high-speed rail project that will traverse four provinces on the island of Java.

The railway contract was signed in October 2015 after Indonesia selected China over Japan in the bidding process. China agreed to complete the railway without using Indonesian government funds or requiring the government to provide loan guarantees.

The rail line was originally scheduled to open in early 2019, but was delayed due to land acquisition and funding issues.

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