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Aviation education inadequate.

Booming aviation industry in the past several years has necessitated larger supply of fliers. The growing demand is not coupled with adequate aviation education in the country. Meanwhile many local pilots have chosen to work for foreign airlines, which offer higher pay. It is estimated that in 2012, the country will need 5,000 pilots. There are a number of education centers providing training for fliers, but the capacity is still below requirement. STPI Curug has turned out good fliers and the fee demanded by the institution is relatively cheap as it still subsidized by the government.

However, starting this year the subsidiary will be abolished that it will likely charge higher fee for its educational service. In addition, the training facilities provided by the local training centers in the country are nor adequate. A number if airlines such as Lion Air and Batavia Air have chosen to cooperate with foreign training centers. The opportunity, therefore, is open for investors to start business in pilot education in the country especially as the transport ministry has invited local and foreign investors to open pilot and technician training centers.

High demand for pilots

Demands for pilots and aviation technicians in Indonesia are expected to continue to rise in the coming years. Based on estimate of the Transport Ministry, demands for pilots will reach 2,500 new pilots in 2008 through 2012 based on an estimate that 250 new aircraft will operate in the country during that period. The strong demand is also caused by many pilots moving to foreign airlines and regeneration. Garuda alone is expected to need 225 fliers in 2008 to 2010 including 111 pilots in 2008, 54 new pilots in 2009 and 20 more pilots in 2010.

The new pilots will be needed to make up for regeneration and with the increase in the number of aircraft. The number of new pilots needed would be larger if some of its pilots decide to move to other airlines. Indonesia Air Asia in 2008 plans to increase the number of its pilots from 100 to 150. Lion Air will need 600 pilots to fly 178 units of Boeing 737-900 ER its has ordered from Boeing factory to be delivered in the next few years. Demand for aviation technicians is also expected to grow sharply to reach 5,000 in 2012.

Capacity and Supply Limited

Currently the country has only four commercial flight schools in Indonesia providing pilot training and education for aviation technicians. They are STPI Curug, Deraya Flying School, Alfa Flying Institute, and Aeroflying Institute. The largest among the four is STPI Curug, which provides more complete educations.

STPI Curug has 38 units of training aircraft including 17 units of Socata TB-10; 11 units of Sundowner C-23; 7 units of Dacota PA-28-236; 3 units of Baron B-58 with a capacity to turn out 120 pilots annually.

However, not all of the aircraft are airworthy. Only 7 units of Socata TB-10 and Sundowner C-23; 2 units of Dacota PA-28-236 and Baron B-58 are airworthy. Starting 2009 STPI Curug will be prepared to have he capacity to turn out 200 pilots a year with the qualification of Commercial Pilot License (CPL) through special cooperation with domestic airlines. For that purpose, steps to improve aviation education facilities began in 2007 such as by repairing the training aircraft no longer airworthy and providing by phases 18 units of additional single engine training aircraft. STPI Curug is also prepared to provide education to turn out 20 helicopter pilots a year. For that purpose, in 2007 two units of Bell-206 helicopter are being procured to be used as training aircraft. Additional 6 units of link simulator are provided for fixed wing and helicopter aircraft.

In order to support the Program of Multi Crew Pilot License (MPL), in mid 2008, the institute will start procurement of Full Flight Simulator (FFS) of B-737-NG and Airbus Series aircraft each 1 unit which will be increased later depending in requirement. In addition to supporting the MPL program, the FFS will meet the capacity requirement for training program recurrent, refreshing and type rating of active fliers of domestic airlines. STPI Curug has established cooperation with foreign training centers such as with ALTEON, Flight Safety International (FSI), International Airline Training Academy (IATA, Inc) and CAE, specially for education in ab-initio and type rating and provision of education and training facilities and marketing abroad.

The capacity of STPI Curug is still below requirement. Until 2006, STPI Curug was able only to turn out 03 graduates a year on the average. In 2007, STPI Curug turned out only 80 new pilots, up from 43 in the previous year. Until March this year it turned out 25 pilots with certificate of Commercial Pilot License (CPL).

Eleven of the new graduates will be employed by PT. Garuda Indonesia, five by PT. Merpati Nusantara Airlines and 9 will be trained further pilot instructors at the STPI Curug. The new graduates could not directly fly commercial aircraft as they have yet to secure license from Boeing and Airbus through additional training.

Subsidy abolished

Starting this year STPI Curug will receive less subsidy, therefore, airlines have to pay fully for the cost of educating their pilots. Subsidy is provided only for 20-30 prospective fliers to be recruited as civil servants by the air transport directorate general and STPI Curug. The education cost of turning out a flier with the rating of CPL-IR certificate is around US$ 35,000--US$40,000. The limited educational facility and the abolition of subsidy have prompted private airlines such as Lion Air and Batavia Air to establish cooperation with foreign institutes. In 2008, Lion Air will cooperate with Australia's pilot academy Flight Idea and ST Atas to train 300 prospective pilots at the Lion Facility Village (LFV) in Cengkareng, Banten.

The 300 students will be divided into eight groups of entries each with 25 students. They will study for 1 month. This program is expected to meet the airlines' requirements of 600 pilots. It is estimated to cost US$ 20 million.

Pilot Helicopters also need more pilots

The country also is short of pilots for helicopters. Until 2007, there were only 197 helicopter pilots and 20 of them were working abroad. In the same year there were 68 helicopters operated by 15 charter airlines and individuals. The ratio was far from sufficient. Ideally are 3 pilots for a helicopter.

STPI Curug was the only school providing training for helicopter pilots in the country but it since 1987 it stopped education for helicopter pilots. Most helicopters are operated by non regular flight airlines chartered mainly by foreign oil and gas and other general mining companies. Foreign oil companies generally will charter only helicopters with pilot in command having flying experience of at least 1,600 hours. Therefore, charter airlines will hire only pilots having long flying hours. Indonesia Air Transport (IAT) hires pilots only with a flying experience of 2,000 to 3,000 hours.

New graduates, therefore, will likely be needed to fly helicopters for pesticide spraying, leading livestock and for border surveillance. Such jobs are scarce in the country. Local oil and gas and general mining companies, however, do not demand such requirements. Local companies often charter Derazona Air Service.
Table--1
Estimate of demands for pilots and technicians

Year Number of New pilots Additional
 new aircraft needed number of
 technicians

2008 50 500 1,000

2009 50 500 1,000

2010 50 500 1,000

2011 50 500 1,000

2012 50 500 1,000

Total 250 2,500 5,000

Source: Data Consult

Table--2
Civil aviation schools in Indonesia

 School Fields of Study Program
 studies

STPI Curug Fliers --Studies for fixed wing aircraft
 fliers
 --Studies for rotary wing aircraft
 fliers
 --Studies for Flight Operation Officer

 Aviation --Aircraft techniques
 technicians --Telecommunications and air
 navigation techniques
 --Airport electricity techniques
 --Airport Mechanical Techniques
 --Building and Airstrip techniques

 Aviation --Air Traffic guidance
 safety --Aeronautic Information
 --Aviation Communications
 --Aviation Accident Aid

 Aviation --Airport Operation
 Management --Air Transport Administration
 --Commercial Air Transport

Alfa Flying --CPL (commercial pilot license)
School --Multi Engine with Instrument Rating
 --Flight Instructor Course

Deraya Flying --CPL (commercial pilot license)
School --Multi Engine with Instrument Rating

Aerofllying --Instrument /Commercial Ground
Institute Training
 --Commercial Flight Training
 --Multi Engine Ground Training
 --Multi Engine/Instrument Flight
 Training General Flight Instructor
 Course
 --Flight Instructor Flight Training

Source: Data Consult

Table--3
Number of pilots and flight operation officer
graduating from STPI Curug

Year Number of pilots Growth
 turned out (%)

2004 31 --

2005 101 225.8

2006 43 -57.4

2007 80 86.0

Source: Data Consult

Table--4
Operators of helicopter and number of pilots

 Operator Helicopter/ Number Number of
 (Charter & Private) Aircraft pilots

AirFast Indonesia Bell 412 2 9
 Bell 212 1
 Bell 204 1

Travira Air Sikorsky 6 34
 Bell 412 1
 BO-105 2

Air Pacific) Bell 407 2 5

Indonesia Air SA365 C2 2 28
Transport (IAT) SA365N 2
 SA365N2 2
 EC 135 1
 Bell 212 2

National Utility Bell 206 1 22
Helicopter (NUH) Bell 212 1
 Bell 412 2
 EC 130 1

Intan Angkasa Air Service Hughes-500 2 4
 SA315 Allouette 2
 Bell 206 1

Pelita Air Service NAS 332 2 42
 SA 330J 2
 BO-105 2
 Bell 412 EP 2
 Bell 430 1
 Bell S-76 2

Gatari Air Bell 212 2 5
 BK-117 1

Aviastar BO-105 2 8

Derazona Air Service Bell 206 5 7
 Bell 412 2

ASCO Nusa Robinson R-44 1 2

Source: Data Consult * * *
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Title Annotation:SERVICE
Publication:Indonesian Commercial Newsletter
Date:Apr 1, 2008
Words:1572
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