VP asks major cities to develop mass transport systems

Jakarta (Antara News) - Vice President Jusuf Kalla on Wednesday asked major city administrations in the country to soon develop mass transport systems to overcome transportation problems and anticipate a continuous increase in the prices of fuel oil.

"We must develop ideal and low-priced mass transport systems as a solution to transportation problems," he said when opening Indonesia Transport & Logistics Expo 2007 at the Jakarta Convention Center here.

With global crude prices hitting a record high of US$95 per barrel now, Indonesia could no longer rely on highway transport systems which were getting crowded and congested, he said.

"Therefore, more mass transport systems must soon be developed in major cities in Indonesia," he said.

Without mass transport systems, people would be exposed to high- cost economy due to transportation difficulties, he said.

Mass transport systems were also needed to enable businesspeople to withstand the increasing fierce competition, he said.

With average annual economic growth projected at 6-7 percent and the population at 240 million, more and more transport modes would be used to carry goods and people, he said.

"Imagine the volume of goods that will be transported," he said.

He said traffic jams were occurring everywhere in the country and as a result, transport costs were also going up, he said.

Therefore, fast and efficient transport means were badly needed.

"We can no longer be a nation that always suffers when global oil prices go up. We must begin to reap profit from oil price hikes by reducing fuel consumption and improving our transport systems," he said.(*)
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