Fri, 15 Sep 2000

Most airports managed by Angkasa Pura suffer losses

JAKARTA (JP): State-owned airport operator PT Angkasa Pura I, which manages 13 airports in the central and eastern parts of the country, said only three of its airports were profitable.

Angkasa Pura I President Gatot Pudjo Hartono said on Thursday that, the Ngurah Rai International Airport in Bali, the Juanda International Airport in Surabaya, East Java, and the Hasanuddin International Airport in Ujung Pandang, South Sulawesi, booked combined profits of Rp 200 billion ($23.5 million) in 1999.

"About 50 percent of the profit came from Ngurah Rai, while Juanda and Hasanuddin contributed 25 percent each," he was quoted by Antara as saying in Mataram, West Nusa Tenggara.

The other 10 airports have been losing money since the economic crisis hit the country in 1997, he said.

Gatot said the Sepinggan Airport in Balikpapan, East Kalimantan was losing up to Rp 16 billion ($1.8 million) a year, while the Selarapang Airport in Lombok, West Nusa Tenggara was losing Rp 5 billion a year.

"The airports have lost large amounts of money each year due to the drop in flights while the cost to maintain operations remained high," he said.

Gatot cited the Pattimura International Airport in Ambon, Maluku, which only serves three flights a day.

Six airports, including Selarapang, Ahmad Yani Airport in Semarang, Central Java, and Adisutjipto Airport in Yogyakarta, managed to book profits before the crisis, but the plunge in their revenues due to the decline in flights since 1997 has put their balance sheets into the red.

Gatot said the airports in Semarang and Yogyakarta were losing money because most of the people had turned to cheaper means of transportation like buses and trains.

The government's intention to hand over the management of the airport in Manado, North Sulawesi to PT Angkasa Pura I in October this year would further undermine the company's finances, he said.

"The airport's income is very small, and we will have to pay for the costs of maintenance," Gatot said.

He said that despite the losses, Angkasa Pura I had no plans to close any of the money losing airports.

"Monies from profitable airports will be allocated to those still suffering losses under a cross subsidy program," Gatot said. (10)