Jakarta (ANTARA) - Komodo Airport in Labuan Bajo, East Nusa Tenggara (NTT), is all set to serve incoming and outgoing international flights to ensure ease of movement for country leaders and delegates participating in the 42nd ASEAN Summit.

The airport’s readiness was conveyed in the Decree of Transportation Minister No. KM 33 of 2023, which will be valid from May 2–18, 2023, and will be supervised by the director general (Dirjen) of civil aviation at the Transportation Ministry (Kemenhub).

"The summit will soon take place in Labuan Bajo. With that in mind, we need to prepare facilities and infrastructures at Komodo Airport required for international flights to ensure that the event will run smoothly," director general of civil aviation Maria Kristi Endah Murni said in a statement issued in Jakarta on Wednesday.

Kemenhub has listed a number of requirements that the Komodo Airport’s management will need to fulfill, including safety, security, and the provision of services on par with its international airport status.

Furthermore, the airport’s management will need to ensure the availability of work units and personnel in charge of conducting customs, immigration, and quarantine activities, while making aeronautical publications, in accordance with the applicable laws and regulations.

In order to arrange flight operations during the ASEAN Summit, Kemenhub has also issued Circular Letter (SE) No. SE 6 of 2023, which aims to ensure the security, order, and smooth running of all series of activities at the high-level event, while minimizing the impact of disruptions to flight services.

As per the SE, Komodo Airport will operate round-the-clock during the ASEAN Summit. It also prohibits scheduled commercial, non-scheduled commercial, and non-commercial flights from remaining at the airport overnight.

Moreover, restrictions on ground time and flight operations will be applied during the summit.

Murni appealed to airlines to reschedule any regular flights that coincide with the flight operations restriction period and to ensure the readiness of the fleet, crews, spares, and other supporting personnel.

She also urged airlines to provide their best services to passengers pre-flight, in-flight, and post-flight.

To support the smooth running of the ASEAN Summit, the government has also made preparations at I Gusti Ngurah Rai Airport, Lombok Praya Airport, Sultan Hasanuddin Airport, and El Tari Airport as the nearest supporting airports that will have designated parking spaces for delegates' planes, she added.

In addition, a number of supporting facilities have been prepared for the summit, such as customs, immigration, and quarantine inspection (CIQ) facilities and helipads for medical evacuations.

During the summit, Murni said, unmanned aerial vehicles (UAV) will not be allowed to operate in the surrounding airspace over Komodo Airport and the other supporting airports apart from those that have obtained permits from the authorities for purposes related to the event.

"The involvement of all related parties for the success of the ASEAN Summit is crucial as it will bring about Indonesia's good reputation in the eyes of the international community and serve as a stage to showcase tourist destinations in Labuan Bajo," she said.

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Translator: Bernardy Ferdiansyah, Tegar Nurfitra
Editor: Azis Kurmala
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