Indonesia Takes Control of Airspace in Riau Islands and Natuna from Singapore

Indonesia Takes Control of Airspace in Riau Islands and Natuna from Singapore

Jakarta, Batamnews - After years of being managed by Singapore, Indonesia has officially taken over the management of the Airspace and Flight Information Region (FIR) in the Riau Islands and Natuna areas, as announced by Minister of Transportation Budi Karya Sumadi. Starting March 21, 2024, Indonesia has effectively managed this FIR, marking a significant milestone for the national aviation sector.

This success is the result of a settlement agreement with Singapore, which has increased the area of the Jakarta FIR by 9.5 percent to 2,842,725 square kilometers. This allows Indonesia to provide air navigation services for the region, optimizing flight safety and efficiency.

In the process, even domestic and international flights passing over this area previously required coordination with Singapore. However, with this realignment, AirNav Indonesia will directly serve these flights.

"After the FIR realignment, both aircraft will be directly served by AirNav Indonesia, no need to go through Singapore," Budi said, as reported by Antara News Agency, Monday, March 25, 2024.

Negotiations on this FIR have been ongoing since 1995, reaching an agreement in 2022, and recognized as an important step forward by the Minister of Transportation. He also emphasized ongoing efforts to improve air navigation service safety and efficiency, in line with international standards.

The Coordinating Minister for Maritime Affairs and Investment (Menko Marves), Luhut B Pandjaitan, stated that Singapore previously had control over the airspace above the Riau Islands and Natuna at an altitude of 0 - 37,000 feet.

"60 days after the issuance of information related to the change, the Indonesian airspace that was previously designated as the Singapore FIR, will fully revert to being the Indonesian FIR," wrote Luhut on his Instagram account, Friday (3/22/2024).

The Indonesian government is determined to manage national airspace safely and effectively, hoping for increased state revenue from air navigation services. The Director General of Civil Aviation, Maria Kristi Endah Murni, added that this operational change is supported by an agreement signed in Bintan in January 2022 and ratified through presidential regulations.

Kristi also explained that adjustments to air navigation service charges will be managed professionally and competitively, with the government setting service fees to maximize benefits for the national aviation industry. In addition, the introduction of Route Air Navigation Services (RANS) Charges in certain areas will begin on March 21, 2024, in accordance with bilateral agreements.

Lastly, Indonesia has placed special personnel at the Singapore Air Traffic Control Center to monitor flights between the two countries, ensuring a smooth and efficient transition in the management of shared airspace

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