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Garuda Indonesia introduces ATR 72-600 aircraft to connect potential economic growth centers

The first two aircraft will take delivery on November 2013.

JAKARTA – In line with the airline’s efforts to develop and strengthen its flight network, especially in the domestic sector, and its commitment to support the Indonesia economic development through the Masterplan for Acceleration and Expansion of Indonesia’s Economic Development (MP3EI) program, Garuda Indonesia – the national airline of Indonesia – is pleased to announce the introduction of new ATR72-600 aircraft into its fleet, starting on November 2013.

The signing agreement of the aircraft delivery took place on Tuesday, October 1, 2013, in Jakarta, between Garuda Indonesia with Avions de Transport Regional (ATR) and the Danish leasing and financing firm, Nordic Aviation Capital (NAC). Garuda will receive 35 ATR72-600, includes firm orders for 25 aircraft and options for 10 additional aircraft, in stages up to 2017. The aircraft will be used to serve short-haul point to point flights, and flights between hubs and spokes.

President and CEO of Garuda Indonesia Emirsyah Satar said, the agreement is part of the airline’s “Quantum Leap 2011-2015” transformation and expansion program, designed especially to broaden and strengthen Garuda’s flight network in the domestic market, and at the same time enhance service to the customers by offering a wider choice of destinations and travel options.

“As the airline industry continues to grow steadily, Garuda will continue to carry out its business transformation and expansion program, in sync with the government’s plans in the next couple of years to develop air transport infrastructure by opening new airports around the country, particularly in fast growing economic regions and tourist destinations,” he said.

Garuda will use these new propeller airplanes on routes that are under the 400 Nm range (under 30 minutes) in all regions of the country. The ATR 72-600 is very much capable of reaching small airports that have runways measuring less than 1,600 meters, and are therefore too small for jet planes.

“Being equipped with modern technology and capable of efficient operations, the ATR 72-600 offers the same high level of comfort to passengers, as the other fleet types operated by Garuda Indonesia. This type of aircraft is the best in its class to serve short distance routes between the islands and cities in Indonesia that have a limited runway capacity,” added Emirsyah.

The company’s determined efforts to develop its network of destinations and improve service quality are part of the airline’s move to join the SkyTeam global alliance in March 2014 and in anticipation of 2015’s ASEAN Open Sky policy. In addition, as a flag carrier, Garuda is committed to increasing national connectivity in accordance with the MP3EI program.

Chief Executive Officer of ATR Filippo Bagnato said, “We are honoured by the fact that Garuda Indonesia is selecting ATR aircraft to expand their regional business and we are pleased to further consolidate our partnership with NAC. This agreement highlights the strong commercial success of the ATR 72-600 in Asia, where it has become the new benchmark for the development of regional air connectivity”. He also reaffirmed that, “The deployment of the ATR customer support offer in Southeast Asia is a major component of our success and we will continue investing to support and further develop this growing region”.

Chairman of NAC Martin Moller declared, “We are pleased to further expand our business both with Garuda and ATR and to contribute to the deployment of optimal regional air connectivity across Indonesia. South East Asia is definitely providing us huge leasing potential, and the ATR 72-600s perfectly match with the requirements for short-hauls in terms of low operating costs, comfort and ability to operate in small airfields and remote areas”.

Garuda will operate the ATR 72-600 with a single class cabin (All Economy) configuration with a seat capacity for 70 passengers to serve flights flying out of its hubs or spokes, such as from Denpasar, Makassar, and Ambon to Labuan Bajo, Tambolaka, and Ende in East Nusa Tenggara, Bima in West Nusa Tenggara, Banyuwangi and Jember in East Java, Bau-bau and Wangi-wangi in Southeast Sulawesi, Luwuk (Central Sulawesi), Mamuju (West Sulawesi), Poso (Central Sulawesi), Kaimana (Papua), and Tual / Langgur (Maluku).

In line with the company’s long-term “Quantum Leap 2011-2015” expansion program, Garuda Indonesia and Citilink are expecting twenty-four new aircraft to support the development of both the national and international flight networks. In the first half of 2013, Garuda Indonesia Group has received twenty new airplanes, consisting of four B737-800 NG, one A330-200, six CRJ-1000 NextGen, one B777-300ER, and eight A320-200. In all, up to the first semester of this year, Garuda Indonesia Group is currently operating 126 aircraft.

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