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Politician criticizes Jakarta, Bandung high-speed railway project cost overrun

Tempo - August 4, 2022

Antara, Jakarta – The PKS Party House of Representatives (DPR) member Amin Ak warned the government to not utilize State Budget (APBN) to cover the cost overrun of one of Indonesia's ambitious projects, the Jakarta-Bandung high-speed railway.

"Don't be trapped in wanting to disburse state budget funds to cover cost overruns," said Amin Ak in a written statement in Jakarta, on August 4, Antaranews reported.

This is because, according to Amin, there have been a number of irregularities in infrastructure projects, even since the project proposal was submitted by China in August 2015. At that time, China offered lower project costs than Japan and promised to see projects being carried out on a business-to-business (B2B) basis without the need for government guarantees.

But along the way, according to Amin, this development has made Indonesia stuck in a dilemma. The dilemma in question is to continue the project with the risk of an increasing debt burden or stop the project with the risk of the project stalling but still paying the debt that is already running.

To stop the project, said Amin, will also prove to be difficult, apart from the fact that a very large amount of money has already been used. Project work is currently more than 80 percent.

"Since the beginning, the feasibility study has been carried out by the Chinese side. It would be strange if they were unable to detect such potential cost overruns. Is this due to the low credibility and quality of the feasibility study or is it a trap to keep the loss project going?"

Source: https://en.tempo.co/read/1619145/politician-criticizes-jakarta-bandung-high-speed-railway-project-cost-overru