Bali To Open Tourist Railway In 2015

Jero Wacik
Indonesia’s Minister of Culture and Tourism, Jero Wacik, announced recently that by the year 2015, holiday makers on Bali will be able to ride on a special tourist train and enjoy the beauty of the island’s scenery as it rolls past them. “The chance to enjoy the beauty of Bali on this new railway should prove to be quite a draw for tourists”. Wacik explained after witnessing the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) signing regarding the implementation of a railroad system in Bali to support tourism. The signing was held at the Balairung Gedung Sapta Pesona Jakarta on 27 December 2010.
The signing of the MoU was carried out by the Director General of Tourism Destination Development, Firmansyah Rahim; the Director General of Railways, Tunjung Henderawan; Bali Governor, I Made Mangku Pastika; and the Director of PT KAI, Ignatius Jonan. The signing was witnessed by Jero Wacik; State Minister for State Enterprises, Mustafa Abubakar; and Transportation Minister Freddy Numberi. A working team was assembled immediately following the signing in order to formulate a plan of action for the construction of the 565 kilometres long railway, which will wrap itself around the entire island of Bali. Construction is slated to begin in early 2011.

RailwayBali’s infrastructure will need to be able to support a surge of up to five million tourists per year by 2015 and Minister Wacik has stated that Bali also needs a new airport. Consequently, Mustafa Abubakar said that the government has allocated IDR 1,9 trillion for the renovation of Ngurah Rai Airport, and work on the project will begin this year and finish in May 2013, just in time for the APEC meeting in Bali.