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Indonesia's Widodo says railway talks with Japan near conclusion

Construction of Jakarta-Surabaya line targeted to start by end of 2018

Indonesian President Joko Widodo speaks to the Nikkei Asian Review in Raja Ampat on Dec. 22. (Photo by Shinya Sawai)

RAJA AMPAT, Indonesia -- Indonesian President Joko Widodo said he is in "very deep and very serious discussions" with Japan about jointly developing a railway connecting the Southeast Asian country's two largest cities, in what would be one of the largest infrastructure projects carried out by the two countries.

In an interview with the Nikkei Asian Review on Friday, Widodo said he expects construction of the Jakarta-Surabaya railway to start at the "end of next year," as the two countries celebrate 60 years of diplomatic relations.

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