Govt Studying Establishment of Two Hub Ports

Jakarta – The government is currently studying the possibility of establishing two hub ports in the western and eastern regions of Indonesia to anticipate future global and regional trade inter-connectivity, a spokesman said.

“The study must be finished within the next two years. It can no longer be delayed,” Deputy Trade Minister Mahendra Siregar said here Monday on the sidelines of a seminar on “Potentials of Kuala Langsa port in Aceh for Regional Economic Development.”

He said there were now a total of 141 international ports in Indonesia and they generally wanted to remain as hub ports.”But for all of them to remain hub ports is impossible,” he said.

Asked which ports in the western region were qualified to become hub ports, Mahendra among others mentioned Dumai in Riau province because it could support the distribution of palmoil exports from Sumatra to different international markets.

During the seminar however Kuala Langsa in Aceh was considered to be the right one in view of the fact that the process of loading and unloading at Belawan port was no longer effective because the waiting time for it could take eight hours while in Kuala Langsa it would take only two hours.

Therefore, he said, the government would in the next one or two years finish the blueprint of the national logistics system.

Mahendra said there were at least three matters the government was currently working on in connection with logistics namely making the blueprint of the national logistics system, developing economic corridors and mapping strategic commodity areas covering production, distribution and exports.

“With regard to economic corridors two hub ports will soon be determined namely one in the western to southern part of Sumatra for commodities and the other in the northern part of Java for certain manufactured and industrial goods,” he said.

Former Aceh governor Abdullah Puteh suggested at the seminar that each province develop one big international port so that it could develop as could be hoped for.

“Germany is big because it has among others the port of Hamburg while the US has the port of New York. Not all ports in Indonesia must be made international. It would be enough if each province only has one big port with others being feeder ports,” he said.

Regarding the mapping of strategic food commodities and export goods, Mahendra said it would be finished this year to facilitate e the process of identification and solving the problem of certain commodity shortages with a view to stabilizing prices in the country.

“The mapping must be finished this year,” he said.Consequently, the government would have accurate data for the strategic food commodity network, including the producing regions, market projections, distribution and export potentials in terms of volume and destinations.

Thereby the government would pursue the right way to overcome possible shortages of commodities, he said.

“So they would not always have to conduct market operations. If distribution is the problem it is this that they have to deal with” he said.

Source: Antara News