Erick Thohir, Minister for State-Owned Enterprises, has announced that the National Flag Carrier, Garuda Indonesia is focusing on developing domestic air routes as opposed to expanding its international air network.
Thohir’s comments on the future of Garuda Indonesia were quoted by the State News Agency Antara on Thursday, 25 May 2023.
The cabinet minister in charge of Garuda Indonesia confirmed that the airline will seek cooperation with air carriers that will provide international air access, such as Qatar Airways, Emirates Airlines, or Singapore Airlines.
Continuing, Thohir commented, “There are plans that following restructuring, Garuda will seek strategic partnerships. Among these partnerships, we are open to cooperating with the Indonesia Investment Authority (INA).” The INA is the sovereign wealth fund of Indonesia. Founded in February 2021, INA has set a target of managing US$24.5 billion of assets.
Thohir explained that INA can seek to form strategic partnerships for Garuda Indonesia. Earlier, Erick Thohir described how Indonesia, as an Island nation, can not connect the nation by train. The second option is to use ships or flights by Garuda Indonesia or Citilink focused on serving the domestic market, not international travel.
The State-Owned Enterprise Minister said that while the domestic travel market is extremely valuable, domestic travelers lack opportunities for mobility as compared to those available to people living abroad.
Based on data from Garuda Indonesia, domestic air trips constitute 78% of the Airline’s income with a value of Rp. 1,400 trillion. Meanwhile, international trips operated by Garuda represent 22% of its business, with a total value of Rp. 300 trillion.
In conclusion, Erick Thohir said flight services to local tourists must be prioritized in order to develop the great potential of domestic tourism destinations.
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