While indications abound that Indonesia’s Mandala Airline may soon resume service, a definite announcement of return to commercial service remains elusive.
In anticipation of Mandala Airline's revival, the Director General of Civil Aviation, Herry Bakti S. Gumay, has reminded all concerned that the aviation law of 2009 remains in effect, requiring Mandala that it must operate 10 aircraft by January 2012 in order to qualify for a commercial airline operating license. This same requirement applies to all airlines flying domestically in Indonesia providing that at least 5 airplanes must be owned and the remaining 5 aircraft can be leased.
Herry indicated that Mandala might be granted some leeway, allowed to introduce new aircraft over time in order to have ten flying by January 2012.
According to Herry quoted in Bisnis Indonesia, “Mandala has verbally advised of their plans to begin flying again after new airplanes on order arrive.” The airline’s management will reportedly take delivery of an Airbus in August 2011.
Mandala Airlines’ recommencement of operations is made possible by new capital injection from Tiger Airways (33%) and Saratoga Capital (51%).
Meanwhile, the Civil Aviation Departments Scheduling and Route Division claims that no formal notification of recommencement of service has been received form Mandala’s management. Typically, such notification would take place a minimum of one month prior to actual operations in order to allow a route capacity calculation to be undertaken
The secretary of Saratoga Capital, Devin Wirawan, confirmed that aircraft have been ordered to begin arriving in August 2011. “The total number of aircraft I cannot confirm, but it will certainly follow the rules in this regard,” Wirawan assured.
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