A Lion Air jet at Soekarno-Hatta International Airport in Tangerang, Banten. Lion Air Group has bought five full-flight simulators from Canadian manufacturer CAE to support the airline’s growing need for pilots. (Reuters Photo/Beawiharta)

Lion Air, AirAsia Miss Financial Report Deadline, as Safety Crackdown Continues


MAY 06, 2015

Jakarta. Lion Mentari Airlines and Indonesia AirAsia, the country’s two largest low-cost carriers, are among 11 airlines that have yet to submit their financial reports to the Transportation Ministry, as public auditors need more time for auditing.

The ministry required all scheduled airline operators in Indonesia to submit their report to the ministry by the end of April as part of the regulator’s crackdown on the airline industry and safety practices following AirAsia’s fatal accident in December that claimed 162 lives over Java Sea.

Other airlines that have yet to submit their financial reports include Lion Mentari’s subsidiaries Wings Abadi and Batik Air Indonesia, AirAsia’s long-haul carrier Indonesia AirAsia X, Sriwijaya Air, Nam Air, Tri MG Intra Asia Airlines, Trigana Air Service, My Indo Airlines, and Cardig Air.

“We are still waiting for audit on the airlines’ financial reports. We give them more time until June 30,” said director general of air transportation Suprasetyo on Monday.

Suprasetyo said that this year is the first time for airlines to submit their financial report to the ministry, hence the leeway on deadline.

A 2015 Transportation Ministry regulation allows a six-week extension from the deadline for an airline to submit its report before the ministry revokes the airline’s permit.

Lion Mentari Airlines — which operates as Lion Air — and its subsidiary as well as AirAsia promised to submit their report by June 30, Suprasetyo said. Lion Air and AirAsia are mulling plans for initial public offerings next year.

Audrey Prograstama, AirAsia’s corporate secretary, confirmed that a public accountant was still auditing its report and said the company was confident to meet the new deadline.

Andy M. Saladin, public relations manager at Lion Air, declined to comment.

Aviation observer Arista Atmadjati was concerned the deadline extension may give airlines more time to conceal their business practices.

“A professional airline operator is supposed to have a financial report every year,” said Arista.

“The financial report can reveal whether an airline is setting aside enough funds for airplane maintenance. If it was inadequate, it shows that the airline is not concerned about safety.”

State-controlled flag carrier Garuda Indonesia, and its budget airline unit Citilink Indonesia, met their submission deadline. Likewise for ASI Pudjiastuti Aviation, an airline that specializes in flying to remote areas and is controlled by Fishery and Maritime Affair Minister Susi Pudjiastuti.

Other airlines that submitted their financial reports are Travel Express Aviation Service, Transnusa Aviation Mandiri, Aviastar Mandiri, Kalstar Aviation, and Jatayu Gelang Sejahtera.