Governors demand involvement in Sunda Strait Bridge project
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The governors of Lampung and Banten said they demanded that they be included in a consortium to manage the Sunda Strait Bridge (JSS) project.
Lampung Governor Sjachroedin ZP said he and Banten Governor Ratu Atut Choisiyah would express their objection if their consortium, which had initiated the JSS development project a few years ago, was omitted from the project following the central government’s plan to take over the feasibility study.
“That is why we want to see President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono. We will object if the central government plans not to involve us in the project,” Sjachroedin said over the weekend.
He also expressed his concern that the feasibility study would have another postponement if it was taken over by the central government. He said the study would require between 3 and 4 percent of the total project funds, which is estimated to be more than Rp 200 trillion (US$21.2 billion).
Sjachroedin added that both the Lampung and Banten provincial administrations expected to have the feasibility study funded by the investors grouped in the consortium, which included PT Lampung Jasa Utama (a Lampung provincial administration-owned company); PT Banten Global Development (a Banten administration-owned company) and Bangungraha Sejahtera Mulia (a subsidiary of the Artha Graha Group).
According to Presidential Regulation (Perpres) No. 86/2011 on the Sunda Strait strategic area development, the consortium, as the initiator of the project, is tasked with completing the feasibility study within 24 months or by 2014 at the latest.
Sjachroedin said that taking over the feasibility study from the consortium meant the central government had negated the significant contributions made by many parties, including by the Artha Graha Group.
The plan to take over the work was revealed by the head of the Fiscal Policy Agency (BKF), Bambang Brodjonegoro, earlier last week at the House of Representatives.
Giving the feasibility study to the Lampung-Banten consortium, according to Bambang, was not in accordance with the public private partnership (PPP) scheme applied by the government.
“We want to apply a correct PPP scheme, meaning that everyone will is openly welcomed to join the bid,” Bambang said.
The JSS project is included in the Master Plan for the Acceleration and Expansion of Indonesian Economic Development (MP3EI) in the field of infrastructure development, which is expected to have a multiplier effect on other areas of development.
Separately, executive director of Indonesian Development Monitoring (IDM), Dedi Rohman, said Finance Minister Agus Martowadojo’s proposal to have the JSS feasibility study funded by the state budget through a revised Perpres 86/2012 had created legal uncertainty in the country.
He said Article 22 of the Perpres stipulated that the initiator of the project was tasked with preparing for the project and funding the preparation work.
“This means that the feasibility study and the bridge’s design are not funded by the state budget. The Finance Minister’s policy will make investors think twice about investing here because of the legal uncertainties in Indonesia,” Dedi said.