Indonesia is set to open a new toll road linking Samarinda and Balikpapan in East Kalimantan province, designed to pass through the nation's planned new capital city located between those two cities next month, an official supervising the project said.

The new toll road will greatly support construction of projects in the new capital city located in Kutai Kartanegara and Penajam Paser Utara regencies, which are located between the province's capital of Samarinda and business city of Balikpapan.

"Currently completion of the overall toll road construction has reached 97 percent. We are optimistic that the toll road paths connecting Samboja to Samarinda can be settled in October this year," Danang Parikesit, the head of toll road project supervisory division at the Public Works and Housing Ministry said.

He added that the toll road path project linking the Samboja district in Kutai Kartanegara regency and the main path linking Balikpapan-Samarinda was almost finished as of early this month.

Besides supporting the activities to accelerate development of the new capital city, the 99.350-kilometer toll road connecting the two cities would highly benefit logistics distribution between the two cities, he said as quoted by the official cabinet secretary website on Monday.

Operation of the new toll road that cost 9.97 trillion rupiah (about 710.8 million U.S. dollars) would cut short land trip to one hour from three or four hours via non-toll roads between the two cities.

Indonesian president has confirmed location of the new capital city in the two East Kalimantan's regencies on Aug. 26, ending the speculations on areas to host the new capital city that have been going on since the idea to relocate the capital city from Jakarta was launched by the president in April this year.

Government has planned to commence capital city relocation process next year, expecting it can be finished within 4 or 5 years. Some 466 trillion rupiah (about 33.2 billion dollars) has been allocated to finance the projects to construct the new capital city.

Source: China � ASEAN Business Council