National flag carrier Garuda Indonesia on Tuesday officiated Makassar as its third distribution hub after Jakarta and Denpasar.
From the South Sulawesi capital, Garuda will serve routes between 12 Indonesian cities and Singapore.
The 12 cities comprise Ambon, Balikpapan, Biak, Denpasar, Jakarta, Jayapura, Palu, Surabaya, Gorontalo, Manado, Ternate and Timika, Garuda spokesman Pujobroto said in a press statement sent to The Jakarta Post on Tuesday.
Pujobroto said the opening of the new hub was meant to support the airline’s business developments and the government’s newly launched National Economic Corridors policy, with Sulawesi one of the six enacted corridors.
The policy is aimed, among others, at boosting economic development in relatively underdeveloped eastern regions.
The new hub was launched in an event in Makassar on Tuesday attended by State Enterprises Minister Mustafa Abubakar, South Sulawesi Governor Syahrul Yasin Limpo and Garuda president director Emirsyah Satar, among others.
“Seeing Makassar’s high rapid growth into a business city and its strategic position in eastern Indonesia, today Garuda opened Makassar as a hub for eastern Indonesia, to increase the mobility of people in this area and thus support economic growth and the improvement of the people’s welfare,” Emirsyah said during the launch.
Pujobroto said Garuda’s “Quantum Leap” program, with which it would add its fleet from 84 aircraft at present to 153 aircraft by 2015, was part of measures to support its business expansion plans to eastern regions.