Jakarta. Super Air Jet, a new Indonesian budget airline reportedly backed by airline magnate Rusdi Kirana, will start operation with three Airbus A320 aircraft after securing an air operator certificate from the Ministry of Transportation last week.
"SAJ has fulfilled the requirements by operating three A320 aircraft, one of which is owned [by the airline] and two others are under its control," Novie Riyanto, the director-general of air transportation at the Ministry of Transportation, said in a statement on Sunday, referring to the airline by its initial.
Dadun Kohar, the director of airworthiness and aircraft operations at the ministry, said to meet the ministry requirement, Super Air Jet also secured a deal with Batam Teknik, a local aircraft maintenance company, for aircraft maintenance.
Batam Teknik was "an approved maintenance organization, which has a capability carry out A320 aircraft maintenance," Dadun said.
Still, Super Air Jet needed to apply for route permits and standard operating procedures for passenger service to the Directorate General of Civil Aviation, a government agency under the transportation ministry in charge of civil aviation, before its maiden flight, Novie said.
"We hope that with the formation of a new airline, Super Air Jet, Indonesia's aviation can improve and compete healthily and always meet the applicable requirements and regulations," Novie said.
Super Air Jet said earlier that the airline aims for young customers, who it believed would drive fresh demand for the 'super' low-cost segment in Indonesia's air travel industry.
Indonesia's domestic air travel now has two dominant players, Rusdi Kirana's Lion Air Group and flagship-carrier Garuda Indonesia, which combined account for 89 percent of Indonesia's domestic air travel, the transportation ministry's data showed.
Lion Air Group's airlines, including Lion Air, Batik Air, and Wings Air, accounted for 60.6 percent of the total passengers last year. In comparison, Garuda and its budget airline subsidiary Citilink Indonesia accounted for 28.3 percent of the market share. The remaining 11 percent market share was served by dozens of smaller regional airlines or chartered flights.