"By saying 'Bismillahirrahmanirrahim' (in the name of the Allah, Most Gracious, Most Merciful), this morning, I inaugurate the Yogyakarta International Airport and flag off the operations of the Airnav tower and tsunami early warning system," Jokowi stated at the airport, on Friday.
State Enterprises Minister Erick Thohir, Transportation Minister Budi Karya Sumadi, Yogyakarta Governor Sri Sultan Hamengkubuwono X, and Central Java Governor Ganjar Pranowo were present at the occasion.
"The airport was built at a fast pace in a matter of just 20 months. We can compare it with the old airport Adisucipto, with a runway measuring only 2,200 meters. In comparison, here, we have a 3,250-meter-long runway," the president pointed out.
The new airport can accommodate wide-bodied aircraft, he remarked.
"There (at the Adisucipto Airport), only narrow-bodied aircraft can land, while here, I was just informed that the A380 Airbus and Boeing 777 can land at this airport (YIA). Wide-bodied aircraft can land here, as it has a 3,250-meter runway," he elaborated.
The airport has a 219 thousand square-meter terminal, 13-14 times wider as compared to the terminal at the Adisucipto Airport that only covered an area of 17 thousand square meters.
"The old airport's passenger terminal has a capacity of 1.6 million passengers, while (YIA) has a capacity of 20 million passengers. This is our duty to get 20 million passengers, and this is not an easy task," he stated.
The head of state admitted that the COVID-19 pandemic has led to a drop in the number of air passengers.
"We know that we are still facing the COVID-19 pandemic. However, once we have the vaccination, Insya Allah (God willing), I believe that the airport can become the busiest. That is important," he affirmed.
The airport was designed to have an earthquake-resistant building to withstand quakes measuring below 8.8 on the Richter Scale and to hold back up to 12-meter-high tsunami waves.
The president is scheduled to hand over aid for micro-, small-, and medium-scale businesses at the Gedung Agung, the Presidential Palace in Yogyakarta, after the Friday prayer.
Related news: Hope wage subsidy increases people's purchasing power: Jokowi
Related news: Jokowi launches wage subsidy assistance for 15.7 million workers Close
EDITED BY INE