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Garuda expansion requires infrastructure boost
Mimi Hudoyo, Bali, March 1, 2011

GARUDA Indonesia's fleet expansion (TTG Asia e-Daily, January 13) will result in an oversupply of seats if infrastructure and accommodation within and beyond Bali cannot support resulting traffic growth, warned Panorama Destination CEO, Dharma Tirtawisata.


Speaking on the sidelines of the Panorama Management Conference over the weekend, Tirtawisata said: "Looking at inbound traffic to Indonesia today, most tour itineraries include Bali. Future infrastructure and accommodation development should not only focus on Bali, but other Indonesian regions as well. Then travellers can reduce the length of stay on the island and visit other destinations."


He added: “Even then, Bali will still need more rooms. Tour operators have been crying over the lack of rooms there. Most hotels in Bali are running at 80 per cent occupancy and above, even during the low season of February."


Tirtawisata said the Bali provincial government should improve infrastructure linking the southern and northern regions to encourage investors to build hotels in the north, echoing a similar call by Bali Tourism Development Corporation executive director I Made Mandra (TTG Asia e-Daily, February 22).


Meanwhile, Garuda recently signed an agreement with GE Capital Aviation Services to finance six new Boeing 737-800NG aircraft and three CFM56-7B engines, for delivery between this year and 2013. The airline had earlier signed similar agreements with Pembroke Group and RBS Aviation Capital.


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