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Building for the Future

Bali's Governor Flies to China to Seek Partners to Build Highways and Rail System

(11/11/2017) Infrastructure development in Bali is often driven by the desire to launch major infrastructure projects in advance of major conferences coming to the Island. In anticipation of a major Summit of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and World Bank set for October 2018, Bali is racing to complete an underpass at the entrance to Bali’s Airport; a clean-up of the mountainous pile of trash at TPA Suwung; the dredging and enlargement of the port of Benoa; expansion of apron areas at the Airport; and a widening of a section of the road leading from the airport to Nusa Dua.

As reported by RadarBali.com, the Provincial government is actively pursuing a number of other important infrastructure projects, not linked to the coming conference. These include the construction of a new toll road connecting Denpasar to Buleleng in North Bali and the creation of a local rail network.

The head of the Provincial Development Planning Agency (Bappeda-Bal), I Putu Astawa, said the toll road and rail system would require a substantial cash commitment.

To this end, Bali’s Governor Made Mangku Pastika leaves for China on November 14, 2017, in search of investors. Joining Pastika on the trip are representatives from other Indonesian provinces: North Sulawesi, North Kalimantan, and North Sumatra.

Astawa said the cost of a Bali local rail system will require an investment of Rp. 30 trillion. Before any rail project can be commenced, a detailed feasibility study taking 3 years to complete is first required.

The proposed fast rail system is seen as an essential element in plans to make the development process more equitable between the Island's north and south.

Plans are also underway for the construction of an airport in North Bali that is waiting for a formal letter of recommendation from the Minister of Transportation.

Meanwhile, plans to build a 204-kilometer north-south toll road must first overcome the major hurdle of land acquisition in order for the project to go ahead. Provincial investors say a major Chinese investor living in London has expressed interest in financing the toll road.

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