Indonesia’s first high-speed train, called Whoosh, was launched into commercial operation on October 1. This service is the first of its kind in the country and in Southeast Asia. The new rail line runs 142.3 km, connecting Indonesia’s capital Jakarta to Bandung, the country’s second most populous metropolitan hub, located in central West Java.
Significant reduction in travel time
With a rated speed of 350 km/h, the 142.3 km railway reduces the journey between Jakarta and Bandung from more than three hours to around 40 minutes. China Railway International actively participated in the construction of this line. The eight-car trains consist of four motor cars and four trailer cars and each have a capacity of 601 passengers.
The omnipresent Chinese
Chinese personnel have been working closely to prepare for the official start of operations since February this year. The Chinese side provided vocational training for Indonesian students in high-speed railway operation positions, including train drivers, train engineers and operation control center dispatchers, to provide talents and technical support for high-quality opening of the railway.
An initiative linked to China’s Silk Road
It is also a landmark moment for Beijing’s Belt and Road Initiative (BRI). Indonesia also pledged to provide public funds to meet the rising cost of the project, which now stands at $8 billion, up from $6.07 billion at project launch