Kertajati International Airport in West Java - Photo by: Angkasa Pura II

JAKARTA (TheInsiderStories) – Transportation Minister Budi Karya Sumadi said Indonesian government has plan to extend Kertajati Airport runway in West Java build by state-owned airport operator PT Angkasa Pura (AP) II.

“The obligation of AP II to carry out the runway extension to be three thousand meters can be carried out in the near future,” he said after attending a coordination meeting of Kertajati Airport at the Coordinating Ministry for Maritime Affairs on Monday (01/10).

The minister explained the construction of the runway at Kertajati Airport with certain land uses so Kertajati Airport can be used by any aircraft including the Boeing 777-300ER type. He stressed that the transfer of flights at Husein Sastranegara Airport in Bandung to Kertajati in Majalengka, West Java was also discussed.

“There are several flights that we will push for in Kertajati. We will encourage them to go to Surabaya, Balikpapan, Ujungpandang, and Kuala Namu. Those who have already dealt with Citilink Indonesia and Lion Air,” explained Sumadi.

He added, that in addition to the two airlines, it will also continue to be added from other airlines. Currently there were still discussions about additions from other airlines with different objectives.

Meanwhile, West Java Governor Ridwan Kamil said all the obstacles to build of Kertajati Airport has been cleared. “God willing, the first Umrah will be tested on Oct. 13, 2018,” said Emil, his nickname.

He added, the runway target is completed in December 2018 for wide aircraft only. Furthermore, regarding the transfer of flights from Husein Airport to Kertajati, Emil assured that most of the flight had been carried out.

But according to AP II chief executive Muhammad Awaluddin that there were several things that needed to be resolve in the management of Kertajati Airport.

“One runway expansion will be 3,000 meters. Second, the addition of an apron expansion because the first time the West Java International Airport (BIJB) was built, the apron was not all intact, all three overlays and taxi ways,” he said.

Awaluddin explained that the development of the runway at Kertajati had stopped cause is still needed by the Governor of West Java to issue of land extension. He hopes that the letter can be issued as soon as possible because the contractor is ready to build an extension of the runway of Kertajati.

He added that a fund of Rp330 billion (US$22.76 million) had been prepared and appointed the contractor PT Adhi Karya Tbk (IDX: ADHI) to build an extension of the runway and expanding the apron and taxi way.

The airport cost an estimated Rp 2.1 trillion. Combined with its operational costs, total investment in the new airport is Rp2.6 trillion.

Besides the main airport infrastructure that covers an area of 1,800 hectares, an ‘aerocity’ will also be built in a 3,490 hectare of land. The airport has two runways of more than 3.5 km in length to accommodate wide-body aircrafts such as Airbus A380.

After full operation, Kertajati Airport, with an annual capacity of up to 18 million passengers, is expected to serve international and domestic flights as well as Hajj group flights. It would replace Husein Sastratnegara, which is currently running at overcapacity. The airport will also operate cargo terminals with the official estimate at 1.5 million tons of cargo by 2045.

Currently, the airport is used only as an embarkation point of Hajj pilgrimage.

The airport was expected to serve people who wanted to fly from West Java cities and towns to their hometowns to celebrate the Idul Fitri holiday in June, but it depended on the airlines.

To ensure that the Airport is easily accessible, the West Java government and Kertajati Airport officials are building new roads and airport train structure. By land transport, the airport will be accessible by the Cikopo-Palimanan and Cisumdawu toll roads. Both toll roads will have direct access to Kertajati airport and they are working on the land acquisition.

According to the plan, the airport will be accessible by an airport train with official design resembling the rail link at Kualanamu Aiport in North Sumatera. Besides connecting the airport to major cities of Bandung and Cirebon, there is also a plan to extend the airport rail to Jakarta by leveraging on the current rail line.

The government planned to extend the railway network to Jakarta and through industrial zones such as Bekasi, Cikarang and Karawang in order to meet logistic needs. Kertajati Airport will also be accessible via the seaport in Cirebon, the main port in West Java and a logistic hub, Patimban Port.

Work on a $3 billion project to build Patimban Port in Indonesia is expected to begin in July with the aim of the port being partially open for operation in March 2019. Both projects, Kertajati and Patimban, are expected to ease industrial density heavily concentrated on Jakarta and its satellite cities.

US$1: Rp14,500

Email: linda.silaen@theinsiderstories.com

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