Jokowi targets to connect Merak-Banyuwangi by end of 2019

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President Joko Widodo (Jokowi) has targeted to finalize the construction of the toll road connecting Merak and Banyuwangi by the end of 2019. He said the toll road from Merak to Pasuruan will be connected by the end of 2018.

Jokowi called on all related institutions, including the Public Works Ministry and State-Enterprises Ministry, to work harder for the infrastructure project. “We have to race against other countries; if not, we will be lagging behind,” Jokowi stated, during the launch of Ngawi-Kertosono toll road in Madiun district of East Java, on Thursday.

The president revealed that during the past few years, the government had focused on construction of infrastructure, which he said were still lagging behind other ASEAN countries. “Without this, we will lose. Alhamdulillah (thank God), today we have finished 51.95 kilometers of toll road from Ngawi to Wilangan,” he remarked.

Jokowi inaugurated the 52-kilometer Ngawi-Kertosono (Klitik-Wilangan) toll road that passes three districts, namely Ngawi, Madiun, and Nganjuk. The toll road is part of Solo-Ngawi-Kertosono route constructed by PT Ngawi-Kertosono Jaya (PT NKJ).

The development of the other two routes, namely Solo-Ngawi by PT Solo Ngawi Jaya and Wilangan-Kertosono by the government, are yet to be completed.

The Ngawi-Kertosono toll road would have a total length of 87.5 kilometers, of which 52 kilometers are constructed by PT NKJ, with Rp3.83 trillion of investment. The remaining route is constructed by the government.

Jokowi made electronic payment at Madiun toll gate to mark the operation of the toll road.

Also present at the launch were Public Works and Housing Minister Basuki Hadimuljo, Finance Minister Sri Mulyani, Cabinet Secretary Pramono Anung, East Java Governor Soekarwo, President Director of PT Jasa Marga Desi, and President Director of PT Ngawi Kertosono Jaya Iwan Moedyarno. 

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