The Indonesian government has launched one of the country’s most ambitious projects, Palapa Western Ring project. The Government signed agreements with PT Palapa Ring Barat, which is a consortium of Moratel-Ketrosden Triamitra to build the fiber optic network connecting Indonesian islands in the Western region. The total cost of the Western Ring project is estimated at 1.28 trillion Indonesian Rupiah, which is around 96.3 billion US dollars.
Palapa Ring project is a fiber optic cable network project that will reach as many as 33 provinces, 440 cities throughout Indonesia. Submarine fiber cables are also utilized to connect islands. A total length of 35,280 kilometers of submarine fiber optic cable is required in this project. Approximately 21 807 kilometers of fiber optic cables are estimated to be laid in the mainland as part of this project. The government plans to construct a ring of fiber optic cables connecting seven islands such as Sumatra, Java, Kalimantan, Nusa Trenggara, Sulawesi, Maluku and Papua.
The agreement was signed at the Finance Ministry office in a ceremony witnessed by Finance Minister Bambang Brodjonegoro. The government was also represented by Communications and Informatics Minister Mr. Rudiantara in his capacity as the Person in Charge of the Cooperation Project (PJPK). During the function, the Minister said that Indonesia enthusiastically looks forward to the successful implementation of the project, so that, people in the country can avail latest telecommunication services through high-speed broadband services.
Indonesia is an island nation with scattered and diversified population. The Indonesian government plans to narrow the infrastructure gap between regions in and outside Java.
The Palapa Ring projects, in which the Western Ring project is also a component, constitute the backbone of the national optic fiber cables to link all districts/municipal cities in Indonesia. The optic fiber network was part of the country’s efforts to increase access to information and provide more opportunities to the people for further prosperity.
There are three sub-projects under Palapa Ring Project: 1. Western Palapa Ring Project, 2. Middle Palapa Ring Project and 3. Eastern Palapa Ring Project. The Western Palapa Ring Project will link areas in the provinces of Raiu, Riau iIslands and Natuna Island with a total of 2,000 kilometers optic fiber cable. The Middle Ring Project will cover Kalimantan, Sulawesi and North Maluku, with a total of 2,700 kilometers of optic fiber cable. The Eastern Ring Project will cover East Nusa Tenggara (NTT), Maluku, West Papua and Papua with a total of 6,300 kilometers of optic fiber cable.
The government targets to begin the construction of Palapa Western and Middle Ring projects in 2016 and plans to put in to operation by January 2019. The Government will float a tender for the Eastern Project by the third quarter of 2016.