Summary: Tourism Arrivals Figures Still Strong Indonesia has seen a strong start to 2008 tourist arrival figures. The number of tourists visiting the archipelago during the first half increased by 11.66% year on year (y-o-y), to 2.9mn. This increase remains in line with BMI’s own expectations of a 15% annual rise, so we see no reason to modify our forecasts this quarter, especially as historically the second half of the year has proved a stronger period for tourist arrivals.
Bali continues to be the engine driving the wider Indonesian tourism industry, with 967,263 tourists arriving by air on the resort island during the six-month period, up 23.8%.
Garuda Pilot Pleads Not Guilty The pilot of the Garuda Indonesia Boeing 737 aircraft, which crashed at Yogyakarta airport in March 2007, killing 21 people, has pleaded not guilty to negligence or deliberately causing an accident. A district court in Sleman, near to the accident site, heard his plea on August 11 2008.
Prosecutors allege that the pilot, Marwoto Komar, ignored several onboard warnings as well as advice from his co-pilot before the crash landing, which killed several visiting Australian dignitaries seated towards the front of the plane.
A report released last year by Indonesia’s National Transport Safety Commission said that the pilot had ignored 15 warnings as he descended too rapidly, but declined to attribute the March 2007 crash to human or pilot error, it was reported by Reuters.
BMI will continue to monitor the trial as it unfolds and will report back on any further developments in our Q109 update.
EU Maintains Indonesia On Airline Blacklist At the same time, it was announced in late July 2008 that the EU is to keep Indonesia on a ‘black list’ of countries banned from flying into European airspace. Safety advisors from all 27 EU member states called for the Indonesian ban to be maintained, following meetings with Garuda, Mandala Airlines and Air Fast as well as with local aviation officials.
The EU statement said that ‘the Indonesian authorities have still not developed and implemented an efficient oversight programme on any of the carriers under their regulatory control’. The ban was originally imposed in mid-2007 following a fate of fatal air crashes across the archipelago as well as widespread reports from within the aviation industry that airline safety standards have dropped since deregulation in the late 1990s. Although no Indonesian carriers currently fly to the EU, the ban also acts as a deterrent to European travellers wanting to travel around the archipelago on domestic flights.
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