Sausan Atika, Jakarta – The Jakarta Council approved a minimum Rp 8,500 (60 US cents) fare for Indonesia's first subway service, MRT Jakarta, on Monday. That is cheaper than the fare proposed by the Jakarta administration and it leaves the decision on how much money is to be allocated for subsidies up in the air.
In the final meeting between the council and Jakarta administration, the councilors had decided the minimum MRT fare of Rp 8,500 would cover the first 10 kilometers traveled on the 15.7-km route between Lebak Bulus in South Jakarta and the Hotel Indonesia traffic circle in Central Jakarta. Passengers are to be charged more if they travel farther than 10 km.
The council and administration also set Rp 5,000 as the fare for the LRT Jakarta that spans 5.8 km from Kelapa Gading in North Jakarta to the Velodrome in East Jakarta. The decisions were made a day after President Joko "Jokowi" Widodo inaugurated the MRT Jakarta on Sunday.
"We are taking the middle road: Rp 8,500 for the MRT and Rp 5,000 for the LRT. Everybody agree?" council speaker Prasetio Edi Marsudi, who led the meeting, said while banging the gavel in the chambers of the City Council building in Central Jakarta.
The councilors argued that both fares were appropriate to facilitate public use of the services. The MRT fare is to be charged to passengers starting on April 1 when it begins commercial operations.
Prasetio also urged the Jakarta administration and city-owned MRT operator, PT MRT Jakarta, to immediately calculate the subsidies needed to support the operation based on the decided fare. The councilors and administration would hold subsequent meetings to decide on the subsidies.
The city administration previously proposed a Rp 10,000 fare for the MRT and a Rp 6,000 one for the LRT, which would have required the city administration to allocate subsidies of Rp 572 billion and Rp 327 billion respectively this year. (ami)