Jakarta. President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo on Friday inaugurated the Danowudu-Bitung section of the Manado-Bitung toll road in North Sulawesi, thus bringing the construction of the 39.8 kilometer toll road to completion.
“The Manado-Bitung toll road, which is 39.8 kilometers long, is now ready to support the community activities in North Sulawesi,” Jokowi said.
Heading to Manado from Bitung can take one and a half hours. It can even be a two-hour trip. The Manado-Bitung toll road will slash travel time to just 30-35 minutes, according to Jokowi.
The toll road will make it easier for people to travel between the two cities, or from Manado to Bitung International Port, and vise versa. It will also facilitate logistics and goods delivery.
Jokowi also announced his plan to connect the toll road with the special economic zone Likupang.
The president hoped that the Manado-Bitung toll road could help propel North Sulawesi’s economic growth, even surpassing that of nationwide.
“Because in 2021, North Sulawesi’s economic growth surpassed the national [economic growth],” Jokowi said.
The Manado-Bitung toll road consists of two sections.
The 14-kilometer-long Section I (Manado Ring Road-Sukur-Airmadidi) and the 11.5 kilometer Section 2A (Airmadidi-Danowudu) began operating last year.
Section 2B comprises the recently inaugurated Danowudu-Bitung section, which spans 13.5 kilometers.