Garuda tight-lipped on results of meeting with Boeing

Garuda tight-lipped on results of meeting with Boeing

President Director of Garuda Indonesia I Gusti Ngurah Ashkara. (ANTARA/Mentari Dwi Gayati)

Jakarta (ANTARA) - President Director of Indonesia's flag carrier Garuda Indonesia, Ari Askhara chose to stay mum on the outcomes of a meeting with officials of the Boeing Company held at the Soekarno-Hatta International Airport office area on Thursday morning.

After the meeting, Ari Askhara quickly went into his car after greeting several journalists waiting since morning, saying he was pressed for time, as he had to attend another meeting.

Shortly before, Boeing's high-ranking Sales Director, International Sales, Boeing Company, Samir Belyamani also adopted a similar no-comment stance.

However, Belyamani remarked that members of the media could put forth their questions via e-mail or the e-mail address that the regional office in Singapore would respond to.

It was earlier reported that Garuda Indonesia Airlines would hold a meeting with officials of the US aircraft manufacturer Boeing over a submission on cancelling the delivery of 49 Boeing 737 Max 8 aircraft.

"They (Boeing officials) will come to Indonesia," Garuda Indonesia President Director Askhara had told Antara in Jakarta, Friday (Mar 22).

Askhara said his side had made a submission regarding the cancellation and perhaps a suggestion on a replacement with other types of aircraft.

"The possibility (of exchange) exists, but at this time, it has yet to give an option to Boeing apart from only 'cancel,'" he noted.

Of the total 50 Boeing 737 Max 8 aircraft ordered by Garuda, one has been operated for domestic flights.

However, Askhara admitted to have not yet discussed about one of the Boeing 737 Max 8 aircraft that have already been operated. "Not yet discussed," Askhara confirmed.

Speaking in connection with the costs for the procurement of the aircraft, Askhara revealed that they were purchased through a leasing scheme.

"We do not have 'capital expenditure' but 'operational expenditure,'" he clarified.

Askhara explained that the cancellation of the deal was due to a loss of public trust in the Boeing 737 Max 8 aircraft following two fatal crashes of the Lion Air JT 610 and Ethiophian Airlines ET 302.

Moreover, aviation authorities in the European Union and the US Federal Aviation Administration have temporarily grounded such aircraft.