A new regulation will allow foreign-owned private jets to roam inside Indonesian airspace to promote tourism and investment. (Reuters Photo/Carlos Jasso)

Foreign-Owned Private Jets to Be Given Free Rein in Indonesian Airspace

BY :TABITA DIELA & THRESA SANDRA DESFIKA

SEPTEMBER 13, 2016

Jakarta. The Ministry of Transportation has signed off on a new regulation that will allow foreign-owned private jets to fly to and from more than two airports in the archipelago as part of an effort to promote tourism and investment.

The regulation is now being processed at the Ministry of Law and Human Rights and is expected to become effective in the next few days, Suprasetyo, the director general for air transportation at the transport ministry, said over the weekend.

Under the previous regulation, private jets or other foreign non-commercial aircraft can only serve international flights, which means the planes can only land at or take off from one airport in Indonesia.

This was seen as an unnecessary hurdle for rich tourists and foreign investors, a lot of whom want to go on holiday in Indonesia or investigate business prospects in the country traveling in the comfort of their own private jets.

Indonesian private jet owners also tend to register their the jets abroad, where they can easily get financing, licenses, or experienced pilots for the aircraft.

"We want to improve high-end and premium-end tourism in the country. We don't want high-end tourists deciding to go to another country just because they can't fly their private jets in Indonesian airspace," Gerry Soedjatman, an aviation expert, said.

Denon Prawiraatmadja, the chairman for non-scheduled carriers at the Indonesian National Air Carriers Association (INACA), said allowing private jets to fly domestic routes is a step in the right direction, in line with common practice globally.

Transport Ministry's Suprasetyo said that foreign-registered private jets, or other non-commercial airplanes, would need a security clearance, flight approval, diplomatic clearance and special permit from the ministry to fly inside Indonesian airspace.

The transport ministry will soon launch a special site to handle flight permit application online, simplifying the process and opening up new opportunities in the mining and tourism sector.

A more relaxed flight permit regime could turn Indonesia into the largest business jet market in Southeast Asia by 2019, overtaking neighboring Singapore, according to Dassault Falcon Asia Pacific, the business jet arm of French aircraft manufacturer Dassault Aviation.

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