Take Off
    Category: SOEs in Transition By : Ulisari Eslita Read : 3276 Date : Sunday, May 04, 2014 - 18:35:58

    Source: PT Angkasa Pura IIs

    As one of the world’s most populous countries, Indonesia has 22 airlines that operate commercial flights and 35 for charter flights. These airlines fly 400 domestic and international flights, which connect 121 cities in Indonesia and 21 countries. Sadly, this growth in airlines has not been matched by growth in airport capacity.

    Starting next year, those flights will be even more frequent with the introduction of the regional Open Sky policies, which will eliminate many of the restrictions over international travel within ASEAN. It will be easy, for example, to start flights to connect Singapore’s Changi to Surabaya’s Juanda airport. But are the airports in Indonesia ready for all this expected new traffic?

    PT Angkasa Pura II, the state-owned airport services company that operates 13 airports in the western part of Indonesia (including the country’s largest, the Soekarno-Hatta International Airport) is working on the answer. Tri Sunoko, president director of PT Angkasa Pura II, is aiming to create the same level of services in Soekarno-Hatta that passengers experience at Singapore’s Changi or Bangkok’s Suvarnabhumi. “We want to be at the same level with our neighboring airports. We don’t want to be left behind,” says Tri.

    Unfortunately, to achieve the same level as Changi or Suvarnabhumi, Angkasa Pura II will have to expand and improve all its airports, especially Soekarno-Hatta. The current condition of Soekarno-Hatta International airport is dire. The 29-year-old airport was built to handle a maximum of 22 million passengers a year, a capacity it reached a decade ago. It is now handling 62 million a year. At current levels, Soekarno-Hatta is the eighth busiest airport in the world, according to Airports Council International.

    Soekarno-Hatta consists of three terminals. In order to achieve its vision as a world-class airport by 2016, terminals 1 and 2 will need to be doubled in capacity, from 9 million (current capacity) to 18 million each, while terminal 3 will need to have 25 million capacity. Besides that, Angkasa Pura II is planning on developing a fourth terminal and a third runway in the near future. “In our plan, this fourth terminal will have 18 to 20 million capacity,” says Tri.

    Unfortunately, Tri predicts, Soekarno-Hatta will never be able to get ahead of demand, as passenger traffic is growing at least 10% every year. To compensate, he would like to expand services to nearby airports to reduce the load on Soekarno-Hatta, mirroring what Japan did to move traffic to Tokyo’s Haneda after its main airport Narita became overcrowded. In January, Angkasa Pura II reopened Halim Perdanakusuma Airport for commercial flights (it also handles charter flights and private jets). At Halim, Angkasa Pura II accommodates at least three flights per hour, or about 48 flights per day. So far, only Garuda Indonesia subsidiary Citilink has moved some flights to Halim.