Indonesia’s President Joko Widodo and the then general manager of China Railway Corp, Sheng Guangzu, at the 2016 groundbreaking ceremony for the Jakarta-Bandung high-speed railway line. Photo: Reuters Indonesia’s President Joko Widodo and the then general manager of China Railway Corp, Sheng Guangzu, at the 2016 groundbreaking ceremony for the Jakarta-Bandung high-speed railway line. Photo: Reuters
Indonesia’s President Joko Widodo and the then general manager of China Railway Corp, Sheng Guangzu, at the 2016 groundbreaking ceremony for the Jakarta-Bandung high-speed railway line. Photo: Reuters
Muhammad Zulfikar Rakhmat
Opinion

Opinion

Muhammad Zulfikar Rakhmat and Dikanaya Tarahita

Is Indonesia moving towards Japan and away from China? Just follow the railway tracks

  • Jakarta is looking to connect projects being separately built by the two East Asian nations into one longer line
  • The cost of China’s section of the venture and negative local sentiment towards Beijing all play a part, as do confrontations in the Natuna Sea

Indonesia’s President Joko Widodo and the then general manager of China Railway Corp, Sheng Guangzu, at the 2016 groundbreaking ceremony for the Jakarta-Bandung high-speed railway line. Photo: Reuters Indonesia’s President Joko Widodo and the then general manager of China Railway Corp, Sheng Guangzu, at the 2016 groundbreaking ceremony for the Jakarta-Bandung high-speed railway line. Photo: Reuters
Indonesia’s President Joko Widodo and the then general manager of China Railway Corp, Sheng Guangzu, at the 2016 groundbreaking ceremony for the Jakarta-Bandung high-speed railway line. Photo: Reuters
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Muhammad Zulfikar Rakhmat

Muhammad Zulfikar Rakhmat

Muhammad Zulfikar Rakhmat is an academic at Universitas Islam Indonesia and is a researcher associate at Jakarta-based Institute for Development of Economics and Finance (INDEF). His research focuses on China's foreign policy in Indonesia and the Middle East. He completed his PhD on the Belt and Road Initiatives in the Gulf at the University of Manchester in 2018.