Friday, 19 July 2019 | 04:46 WIB

Coordinating Minister Luhut Offers Several Airports to Receive Direct Flights from India

Silangit Airport in North Tapanuli, North Sumatera (infopenerbangan)

JAKARTA, NNC - The Indonesian government has offered investment opportunities in strategic infrastructure projects in Indonesia to India. One of the project is the Silangit Airport in North Sumatera.

"Silangit Airport is one of the several airports we offer for investment. Another airport is the Labuan Bajo Airport," said Indonesia Coordinating Minister of Maritime Affairs Luhut Binsar Pandjaitan at the India-Indonesia Infrastructure Forum in Jakarta on Monday (03/18).

He said the government is offering investment opportunities in Indonesian infrastructure projects to a number of countries aside from India.

The Coordinating Minister added that the cooperation of Indonesia with India and other growing countries such as China could be expanded further as the countries' economies keep on developing.    

At the forum, initiated by the Indian Embassy in Jakarta, Luhut mentioned that Silangit Airport was offered in order to realize the government's target of setting up North Sumatra as a tourism and business hub in ASEAN region.

However, India is not only the only country that the government has offered to invest in Silangit Airport. "We are ready for any countries that are ready to invest," he said in a serious tone.

The Coordinating Minister also claimed to have offered the airports in Batam, Bangka Belitung, and Yogjakarta, to serve as a direct flight routes from India.    

Moreover, the government also offers potential cooperation in pharmaceutical industry, as well as power plants. According to Luhut, one of the potential projects is hydropower.

"During their presentation, they presented hydropower development that can be 20 to 30 percent cheaper. Now we want to see how it is. If it is good, then why not," he added.        

During the forurm, the Minister also answered questions from Indian businesses in relation to taxes. "We have no problem with [tax] regulation. We have explained to them about it, and they are satisfied. We are also formulating the tax allowance and tax holiday mechanism," Minister Luhut added.

He continued that the tax holiday could be immediately given to entrepreneurs who meet the requirements. To note, the value of India's investment in Indonesia in the 4th quarter of 2017 is US $15.7 million in 243 projects.

Through the India-Indonesia infrastructure forum, the two countries agreed to increase cooperation, especially in infrastructure. No fewer than 20 dozens of elite companies from India were invited to hold meetings between entrepreneurs and businessmen from Indonesia. In addition to Coordinating Minister for Economy Luhut, Minister of Transportation Budi Karya Sumadi also attended the forum.