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Stakes couldn't be higher for Indonesia's high-speed rail contractor

Wijaya Karya is part of the Indonesia-China consortium working on Southeast Asia's first high-speed rail link.

JAKARTA   On the morning of Jan. 21, a bright-red excavator dug its claws into a patch of earth on the western outskirts of Bandung as Indonesia's president, Joko Widodo, looked on with a smile. He was witnessing the birth of the nation's first high-speed railway, which will connect the mountainous city to Jakarta.

     Another president -- of a company, not a country -- was also in attendance. Bintang Perbowo, head of state-owned contractor Wijaya Karya, or Wika, may have been watching things unfold with a little more anxiety than the politician. After all, his career may hinge on the project.

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