West Papua is a rich land blessed with abundant natural resources such as nickel, gold, coals, and many more. These riches of the land contribute a lot to Indonesia’s economic development. This will further be maximized with the most popular means of transportation for transporting goods since the early days, the railway. The railway system has always been a very important aspect in any nation’s growth, especially for a large scale development. The railway network in this matter, West Papua, will be able to immensely improve the effectiveness and efficiency in the distribution of mining, agricultural, and plantation commodities. These potentials are great pillars to support the regional economy. With railway network, treasures of West Papua, such as oil, gas, minerals, coal, and agricultural and other natural resources can be distributed faster and at relatively low costs.
Unearthing these treasures of West Papua is only halfway towards economic development, transporting and distributing it to places in need of these produce and resources is what makes it fruitful. With the construction of Trans Papua Railway, we are witnessing the dawn of an economic growth spurt in Papua.
Trans Papua railway will be one of the 29 transportation infrastructure projects in Papua, consisting of land, sea, air and railways transportation that will be conducted in 2016 by the Ministry of Transportation (MoT). MoT is targeting the construction of Papua railway to start in September or October of 2016, and it will be funded entirely by MoT’s budget. The railway will be constructed from Sorong to Manokwari, between Jayapura and Sarmi. The end goal would be to connect the railway to the ports and airport.
Trans Papua Railway will only serve as a freight train rather than for passengers. This is exactly what is needed to transport West Papua natural resources. In the future, it is possible to operates it as a passenger train when there’s a surge of passenger’s demand. This railway will then be beneficial, not only to West Papua, but also the whole nation. With the accessibility of resources from Papua to all over Indonesia and in return, the easier access to the central will increase Papua’s economy.
In the near future, there will be developments in Maruni to mine quartz sand at the Botak Mountain Region in Momiwaren, South Manokwari District. The transportation of quartz sand materials will be easier and cheaper if done by train.