Tuesday, April 14, 2009

EU's ban on our Airlines

Many aircrafts accidents have happened in our country, killing lots of its crews and passengers.

The latest accident was on 6 April when the Air Force’s Fokker F-27 crash-landed & hit a hangar at the airport in Bandung, West Java, killing all of its 24 crews & passengers.
In an interview with Tempointeraktif, the Air Force’s PR vice Marshal Sagoem said that the plane’s black box is still being investigated and the main cause of accident can only be known three months after the tragedy.

Meanwhile, The Jakarta Globe reported that our inability to stop aircraft accidents has caused the European Union (EU) to extend the 21 months old ban on our aircraft entering their air space, saying that our aviation sector must meet seven more requirements. The ban was imposed in July 2007 after two Indonesian commercial aircrafts crashed, one in Jogyakarta, the other in South Sulawesi, killing a total of 123 passengers, based on the recommendation of the International Civil Aviation Organization which issued 69 requirements which should be met.
Our government has made very serious efforts to meet those requirements, including amendment of the National Aviation Law last January, that the Minister of Transport Syafii Djamal said that EU has no more reason to extend their ban.
Unfortunately, a series of embarrassing aircraft accidents occurred last February, while aviation experts from the EU were visiting Indonesia to assess its progress before the March meeting. As a result, the EU extended the ban last March, pending completion of seven remaining requirements. EU’s ambassador to Indonesia i.e. Julian Wilson said that “The EU will be reviewing them at the next meeting in June ” Wilson said, adding that they were technical issues. “They are mostly related to inspections by the Directorate General of Civil Aviation at the Transportation Ministry.”

According to flag carrier Garuda’s President Emirsyah Satar, EU’s ban has costs Garuda around US$ 9 Million annually.

Considering the above, I hope that our government would strictly reconsider the licenses that have been granted to airlines in Indonesia, and always make sure that they obey all the aviation rules and regulations in our country as well in other countries of the world.

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