Monday, February 25, 2013

KUALA NAMU Airport as an International Hub


PT Angkasa Pura II will make Kuala Namu Airport Medan as an international aviation hub, while Soekarno-Hatta Jakarta Cengkareng, as the domestic aviation hub.

Angkasa Pura II President Director Tri Sunoko said the commitment to make Kuala Namu airport as a international hub appropriate given its location geographically closer to Singapore and Kuala Lumpur.

Geographical advantages, making flights from Medan to be much more efficient to ASEAN countries and other countries rather than flying from Jakarta in terms of time and fuel.

Since January, Kuala Namu Airport running on shadow operation to test navigation equipment and radar airport.

If after operating officially later, it is optimistic that the airport is located in Deli Serdang, North Sumatra, it can shift the position of Singapore's Changi Airport and Kuala Lumpur Malaysia Airports.

Tri Sunoko insist the Soekarno-Hatta airport which operating since 1985 is still to be developed considering the capacity already exceeds the limit but will be focusing a collector for domestic airports.

Both airports are also considered in the list of airports that are used to deal with the ASEAN Open Sky 2015.

Therefore, it also requested the cooperation with stakeholders including the Ministry of Transportation in order to realize the plan's two airports. "These ideals we must work together," he said.

Ministry of Transportation reported that there were five airports are prepared to face the Asean Open Sky namely Soekarno Hatta (Jakarta), Juanda (Surabaya), Sultan Hasanuddin (Makassar), Kuala Namu Airport (Medan) and Ngurah Rai (Bali).

Friday, February 22, 2013

Domestic shipping deal sparks new talk of Cosco, CSCL merger

China’s two biggest container carriers, China Cosco and China Shipping Container Line (CSCL), are no strangers to bloody balance sheets. In the first half, China Cosco posted a loss of US$207 million, compared with a $151 million loss a year earlier.

CSCL had a first-half loss of $205 million, compared with a $100 million loss a year earlier. Rising fuel costs and falling freight rates, especially on Asia-Europe routes, are keeping the lines in the red.

Alphaliner reports that vessel utilisation levels on Asia-Europe have been below 90 percent since May this year, with weaker than expected peak season demand causing spot rates on Asia-EU and Asia-Med routes to fall by 40 percent.

As two massive, unwieldy state-owned shipping lines, one can’t help wondering what, if any, pressure there is for the carriers to improve their profitability. Shareholders are certainly not an issue.

But it seems that even Beijing has a limit when it comes to tolerating losses. Three beers into Friday’s happy hour, a buzzing Blackberry brought the news that China Cosco and CSCL planned to join forces in the domestic shipping market to try to weather the market downturn.

The carriers have agreed to jointly operate trade routes from northern and northeastern China to Fujian Province and Shantou in the southern province of Guangdong from mid-October. Both lines, which control 80 percent of the domestic shipping market between them, will supply the ships.

In a statement, Hong Kong-listed CSCL said the move was part of “intensive cooperation in domestic container shipping” between the lines.

What it also did was reignite long-running speculation that China’s two major carriers will merge. Back in May, we heard that the Assets Supervision and Administration Commission (ASAC), a statutory body that controls state-owned enterprises, had put pressure on the lines to combine operations in a bid to offset their huge losses.

At a casual glance it makes heaps of commercial sense. Why have two massive lines, both owned by the state, competing with each other on all routes? Merging CSCL and Cosco would create a carrier with a 1.3 million TEU capacity, close behind the world’s third biggest line, CMA-CGM. If done properly, a large but lean carrier offering economies of scale and serving all the main routes would be able to take on all the top lines.

There is a problem, however, which is that it would take a lengthy and Herculean effort to merge the two lines. Together, the companies operate about 140 shipping, port and even finance companies in a gigantic web of interests that would confuse even the most focused spider.

A top level merger may be some ways off, but joining forces on the domestic China trade could be the start of a consolidating move towards a bright and maybe even loss-free future.


Thursday, February 21, 2013

AirAsia NEW ROUTES: Singapore and Makassar Makassar-Kinabalu

Air Asia New Routes

AirAsia Indonesia will make Makassar as a hub for international routes from eastern Indonesia, with the opening of routes to explore Makassar - Singapore and Makassar - Kota Kinabalu.

Chief Executive Officer of AirAsia Indonesia Dharmadi said that with the opening of a sales office in Makassar is expected to start making capital of South Sulawesi as an international aviation hub, in addition to continue to develop domestic routes.

"We hope that soon we'll be the permission for opening the route to Singapore, Makassar could be a hub for international routes because of the closer here, including the Kinabalu," he said after opening a sales office in Makassar AirAsia Indonesia, Wednesday (20/2).

Dharmadi a former pilot, said after later getting permission Makassar - Singapore and Makassar - Kinabaru, the route can be connected with international routes have been opened by AirAsia Berhad are like Kuala Lumpur - Jeddah.

"So later on if it is open, it can be connected with a network of AirAsia, so from Makassar - Kuala Lumpur - Jeddah. Anniversary of Makassar is not too far either he said.

Nevertheless, the company also remains focused on domestic routes such as to Manado, Surabaya and Bali. The opening of the sales office located at Jalan Boulevard, Ruko Ruby, Panakukkang, Makassar, was inaugurated by national leaders as well as former Vice President Jusuf Kalla.

Sales office is the ninth of the total Indonesia AirAsia sales offices that are scattered in Jakarta, Bandung, Medan, Yogyakarta, Bali and Surabaya. Indonesia AirAsia is currently serving 70 routes, which are connected through six hubs namely Jakarta, Bandung, Bali, Surabaya, Medan and Makassar.

From the Makassar hub, already operates routes Makassar - Kuala Lumpur four times a week so it will be changed to daily, while for domestic routes from Makassar hub currently serves Makassar – Jakarta twice per day, Makassar - Balikpapan once, and at 1 March serving Bali, Manado, and Surabaya.

He said the government of Indonesia and Singapore also recently signed a bilateral agreement about the airline industry so that it can be used by the company and other airlines to explore the route to the land of the lion. "Basically, we have developed a connection from hub to hub, for example, from the hub of international routes to London and Singapore for example. Makassar location support," he said.
Dharmadi said that until now the company operates a fleet of some 22 aircraft and Makassar hub of which is allocated two planes.
He said the addition of the aircraft when it is supported also by the policy of the company aircraft rental. This year the company will add nine aircraft so that its fleet to 31 aircraft.

AirAsia Indonesia, he said, aims to add 10 aircraft per year in the next few years in line with the company's efforts in developing business expansion. This year the company expects the number of passengers could reach 8.5 million - 9 million compared with last year's 6 million passengers.

In that occasion, former Vice President who is currently the Chairman of the Red Cross Indonesia Jusuf Kalla said there are several ways to measure the development of an area and two of which productivity and facilities.

But he said if the area is already well in terms of productivity and connectivity facilities to be supported by other regions.

"Economic growth in Makassar is higher than the national economic growth of 6.2%, while the Makassar only 9% due to productivity as well, so this Makassar airport facilities in terms of the center position for a flight to the East and the West," Kalla said.

South Sulawesi Provincial Government Assistant Public Welfare Charity Natsir added just feel if AirAsia makes Makassar as an international aviation hub of eastern Indonesia. "In the last five years our economic growth above 8%, 8.46% to be exact, while we also keep inflation at the level of 3.2% is the lowest compared to other regions," he said.