Facts about the Trans-Papua Road that Connects Papua and West Papua

West Papua
Source : Detik

In cooperation with the Ministry of Public Works and Public Housing (PUPR), the Indonesian government aims to achieve sustainable infrastructure development in Papua and West Papua provinces. It is designed to achieve equitable infrastructure development, lower the cost index, and lower the high poverty rate.

Previously, connections between Papua’s regions had to rely on air transportation, which resulted in high prices for necessities. As a result, the Trans-Papua Road was built to improve the welfare of the Papuan people. In addition, by increasing access and connectivity between regions, people can also reach isolated areas.

How is the infrastructure sector developing in the Land of Papua? What are the facts and history of the Trans-Papua Road’s construction? Here’s a summary for you.

Accelerates Papua Infrastructure in 2022

West Papua
Source : Okezone

In 2022, the Republic of Indonesia’s Ministry of PUPR made a breakthrough in community infrastructure. It is one of the most important things that the government must realize to benefit the community. They will make an integrated, precise, and focused breakthrough and collaborate with other Ministries or Institutions and Local Governments to carry it out.

The provinces of Papua and West Papua, like the capital city of Jakarta, have a high potential for rapid development. The following are the steps in the two provinces’ infrastructure development:

– Unlock the Region’s Isolation

The Ministry of PUPR reduces regional isolation while improving access and connectivity by constructing a 3,534-kilometer Trans-Papua Road and a 1,098-kilometer Papua Border Road. The development of infrastructure in the form of this road will make it easier to access vehicles, which will benefit the community’s economy.

– Increasing Human Resources in Papua

They provide affirmative support for human resource development in Papua. The trick is to conduct Human Resources (HR) training for construction services with Papuan and West Papuan partners. It is critical to increasing human resources so that all Indonesians, including Papuans, can advance economically and socially.

– Cash-Strapped Program (PKT)

They implement the Cash-Intensive Program (PKT). This program’s implementation aims to distribute income to the people of Papua and West Papua as part of the National Economic Recovery following the COVID-19 Pandemic.

Trans-Papua Road Facts

West Papua
Source : CNN Indonesia

One of the leading infrastructure development programs in Papua and West Papua is the construction of the Trans Papua Road. The following are some facts about the Trans Papua road:

– 5 Times the Distance between Jakarta and Surabaya

This national road stretches 4,330 kilometers from Sorong City to Merauke. Of the total length, it is divided into 3,259 km in Papua Province and 1,070 km in West Papua Province. If completed as planned, the Trans-Papua Road will be more than five times the distance between Jakarta and Surabaya (East Java), which is 800 kilometers.

– Its Construction Began during Indonesia’s Third President’s Reign

The Trans-Papua road construction activities have been widely publicized since 2014. It was under Joko Widodo (Jokowi), Indonesia’s seventh president (until now).

However, according to credible sources, the construction of the Trans-Papua road appears to have begun during the reign of Indonesia’s third president, BJ Habibie. It’s just that building was still sporadic in the past, with only small roads in a few places.

– Hampered by Difficult Terrain

President Jokowi tried one of the Trans-Papua segments on a dirt bike in June 2017. At the time, he was assessing the steepness of the Trans Papua project. The rugged terrain is an impediment and a challenge for the Trans Papua project’s construction workers.

Contractors are also advised to be extra careful when constructing the Trans Papua Road. The process should not harm the protected forest stretching from Jayawijaya to Mimika, Armat, Yakuhimo, and Puncak Jaya.

In addition, there are other challenges associated with the project, such as the contractors’ need to deal with extreme topographic conditions and limited logistics delivery.

– Main Goals of Trans Papua Road Development

The construction of the Trans-Papua road is part of a government initiative to equalize development outside of Java. So far, Papua and West Papua have been ostracized because growth in the region seems to lag behind other areas in Indonesia.

Furthermore, the Trans Papua project aims to improve the community’s quality of life by open access isolation from remote areas and to lower costs considered high due to a lack of infrastructure.

– Advantageous for Indigenous Papuans

The local community admits that the presence of the Trans Papua road improves community mobility and logistics distribution while stimulating the local economy.

Before it, indigenous people had to fly to Manokwari Regency or Sorong City in a small plane from the Valley of Kebar Tambrauw. Building materials from other areas had to be passed to the Kebar Valley at a high cost. They traveled more after the Trans Papua Road by renting a double-axle car with an open pickup.

The entire work on the Trans Papua Road, which unites Papua and West Papua, will be completed in 2024.