Govt expects Merpati to resume operation in 2017

The State Enterprises Ministry has projected that cash-strapped Merpati Nusantara Airlines will resume full operations next year along with the completion of its business restructuring.

“We hope it can resume operations in 2017 if in the remaining one year it receives a privatization permit from the Finance Minister and investors are ready to invest in it, ” the ministrys deputy for business restructuring and development Aloysius K. Ro, said on the sidelines of the signing of an operational cooperation contract between Garuda Maintenance Facility (GMF) and Merpati Maintenance Facility (MMF) here on Tuesday.

Since the airlines ceased operations in February 2014 the restructuring program including discharging some 1,500 employees still continued, he said.

In this regard, the government has also injected funds in the form of state capital participation to complete the restructuring of Merpatis business which required some Rp400 billion, he said.

One of the concrete programs to restructure Merpatis business is encouraging synergy between Garuda Indonesia and Merpati to allow operational cooperation between Garuda Maintenance Facility (GMF) and Merpati Maintenance Facility (MMF).

“This is a big step in which GMF will manage MMF to increase the capacity of domestic aircraft maintenance business,” he said.

The final step is settling the airlines debts by inviting investors to become shareholders of Merpati.

“It is not easy to find investors to engage in flight business under normal circumstances,” he added.

Source: Antara News