Indonesia – Plans are under way to develop Bintan Island into a tourism and aviation hub, under an MoU signed recently between PT Garuda Indonesia (Persero) Tbk. and Singapore-based investment company, Gallant Venture at the Singapore Airshow 2014.

Bintan Island will be developed as the airline’s new hub with a dedicated airport for Garuda and its subsidiary, as well as a new centre for aircraft maintenance. The carrier will also be promoting Bintan as an international tourism destination while providing support to develop both outbound and inbound connectivity.

As part of the first phase, one runway and one terminal will be developed to accommodate initial traffic. The terminal will be connected to a ferry terminal which will service Singapore and batam from/to the airport Bintan.

Eugene Park, CEO of Gallant Venture, spoke of the intention to develop Bintan as the choice destination for travellers and to extend Gallant Venture’s Bintan Industrial Estate into a world-class aerospace centre.

“We are committed to invest providing the necessary infrastructure to serve the growing number of visitors to this island. We are extending our road network, power, portable water and telecom facilities to the new airport and its adjacent aerospace park. Our ferry connections to neighbouring islands, including Singapore, will be enhanced so to ensure speedy services and quicker turnaround,” Mr Park said.

President and CEO of PT Garuda Indonesia Tbk, Emirsyah Satar, said that this new operation out of Bintan will help “strengthen Garuda’s network development, with a potential to connect East Indonesia with West Indonesia and become the meeting point” for its international flights to Europe and the Far East.