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HSR deepens friendship between Chinese, Indonesians

China Daily | Updated: 2024-01-12 09:49
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Passengers take selfies in a carriage of a high-speed electrical multiple unit (EMU) train running on the Jakarta-Bandung High-Speed Railway in Indonesia, Oct 17, 2023. [Photo/Xinhua]

JAKARTA — The Jakarta-Bandung High-Speed Railway has deepened the friendship between the people of Indonesia and China, exerting a positive influence on enhancing relations between the two countries, said Garibaldi Thohir, chairman of the China Committee of the Indonesian Chamber of Commerce and Industry.

The Jakarta-Bandung HSR has been welcomed in Indonesia, Thohir said in a recent interview in Jakarta.

He noted that since the official start of its operations over two months ago, there has been a surge in enthusiasm among the Indonesian people for traveling on the HSR.

He said that China's advanced HSR technology, combined with the friendly and warm service of Indonesian crew members, has made the Jakarta-Bandung HSR a highly attractive public transportation option in Indonesia.

The Jakarta-Bandung HSR, connecting Jakarta and West Java's provincial capital Bandung, is the first high-speed railway in Indonesia and in Southeast Asia.

With a maximum designed speed of 350 kilometers per hour, it cuts the travel time between the two cities from over three hours to around 40 minutes.

As a flagship project under the Belt and Road Initiative, the 142.3-km railway is the first overseas HSR project that fully uses Chinese railway systems, technology and industrial components.

Thohir said that the high-speed railway, which has a large passenger carrying capacity, is a stable, efficient and low-carbon transportation mode.

China's cities have established a reliable and convenient interconnected network through high-speed railways and Indonesia should learn from China and construct more high-speed railways, he said.

"The Jakarta-Bandung HSR brings advanced Chinese high-speed railway technology to Indonesia and strengthens the connection between Jakarta and Bandung, playing a significant role in promoting Indonesia's regional economic development," Thohir said.

"I hope that in the future, the Jakarta-Bandung HSR can be further extended to Surabaya, and the Indonesian islands of Sumatra and Kalimantan can also explore the possibility of building high-speed railways in order to enhance the transportation and economic development of the whole of Indonesia," Thohir said.

The Indonesian Chamber of Commerce and Industry is an important bridge of communication between Indonesian enterprises and the government, and its China committee plays an important role in promoting China-Indonesian economic and trade cooperation.

Thohir recalled that he first visited China in 1993 and has visited many Chinese cities over the past 30 years. "I'm very fortunate to be able to witness China's development achievements. China's development is very fast," he said.

"I'm amazed at the great changes in China in these 30 years. I get a different experience each time I go to China. Many cities have left unforgettable impressions on me, and Indonesia has something worth learning from every city."

He said China is an important source of investment for Indonesia. "China's investment in Indonesia has created jobs, brought social and livelihood values, and made important contributions to Indonesia's social development."

Thohir said Indonesia and China have broad prospects for cooperation in mining, renewable energy, agriculture, fisheries, science and technology, tourism and other fields.

"Chinese enterprises are warmly welcome to invest and develop in Indonesia, and I hope Indonesia and China can continue to deepen cooperation," he added.


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