TEMPO.CO, Jakarta - Indonesia is geographically dominated by islands. As an archipelago, the country is seen as in need of major breakthroughs in developing modes of transportation that can support the tourism sector.
"With Indonesia being an archipelago, building airports in every island would certainly cost a lot," Sugihardjo, head of the Transportation Ministry's Transportation HR Development Agency, said in Yogyakarta, Thursday, November 5.
Therefore, Sugihardjo said, the government is currently preparing to use seaplanes as transportation modes in the tourism sector. Seaplanes would allow tourists to access remote islands that do not yet have airports for commercial aircraft to land.
He said that the concept of tourism by seaplane leads to quality tourism or high-end tourism, with foreign tourists as the main market.
Adopting the 3A concept of tourism; namely attractions, accessibility and amenities, seaplanes are an aspect accessibility. This concept, according to Sugihardjo, is focused more on tourism development. The government will determine the areas that will become water airports, as well as areas that will serve as stops.
Sugihardjo said that since 2019 the Director General of Civil Aviation's Research and Development division has been observing five to ten locations as prospective water airports for sea planes to land on.
As for the human resources, starting in 2021 Indonesia will train special pilots to fly the seaplane. They will be trained at the Banyuwangi Aviation Academy in East Java. "Pilots with general skills can also be trained to specialize in this sea plane," said Sugihardjo.
The ministry's head of Civil Aviation Human Resources Development Center, Heri Sudarmaji, said that the government has allocated a budget for this concept in 2021. One of the allocations is for the installation of floating kits imported from US manufacturers.
"Starting in 2021, the floating kit will have been installed in the Banyuwangi academy, and then we can start training the people to operate sea plans," he said.
Pribadi Wicaksono (Kontributor)