Garuda Indonesia is hoping to become one of the world’s top airlines, but the president director said the flagship carrier needs a state of the art airport as its hub to achieve that goal.
“If you want to be one of the biggest airlines, we should get the support of a good airport,” Garuda President Director Emirsyah Satar said.
“So having a nice airport is quite important,” Emirsyah said.
He also pointed out that airport facilities (or lack thereof) were among the biggest contributors to flight delays, “because of the congestion at the airport itself.”
Accordingly, Emirsyah said that the major airports in the country should plan for long term improvement. “Our airports clearly need to invest to reach the state they need to be in,” he said.
Indonesia’s airports, he said, were mostly operating at overcapacity. Among the government’s more immediate priorities are the expansion of Jakarta’s Soekarno-Hatta airport and the Ngurah Rai airport in Bali, as well as the new airport for Medan, North Sumatra in Kuala Namu.
Emirsyah said that in terms of quality of air transport infrastructure, Indonesia was still below the Asean average, just third from the bottom above Vietnam and the Philippines.
The country also ranked third from bottom in the tourism competitiveness index in the region.