Contradicting what his colleague had said earlier this week, a marketing executive of the Indonesian carrier PT Sky Aviation affirmed that his company would not delay the purchase of 12 Russian Sukhoi Superjet 100 airplanes.
Sky Aviation’s general manager for promotion, Sutito Zainuddin, said late on Tuesday that the company needed the additional aircrafts to support its expansion plans.
“The contract that we signed is still in effect,” he said as quoted by kompas.com.
He added the additional 100-seat planes would be needed to connect major cities in Indonesia, particularly Jakarta.
An official statement from the Russian Embassy in Jakarta has confirmed that the contract between the Indonesian carrier and Sukhoi Civil Aircraft was signed during the International Aviation and Space Salon MAKS-2011 in Zhukovsky, Russia, on Aug. 16, 2011.
The contract is valued at US$380.4 million.
Earlier this week, Sky Aviation’s safety manager, Sukamto, said that following the Sukhoi Superjet 100 airliner's crash, the company would delay the ordered aircrafts’ delivery until the air crash investigation was completed.
Last Tuesday, a Sukhoi Superjet 100 arrived at Halim Perdanakusuma Airport in East Jakarta and was welcomed by potential buyers, including officials of PT Sky Aviation Airlines, who hosted the demonstration flight or “joy flight”.
On Wednesday, the Sukhoi carried out it first exhibition flight and landed smoothly at the airport.
However, the second exhibition flight of the Russian-made plane ended in tragedy.
With 45 people onboard, including nine flight attendants of the Sky Aviation, the Sukhoi crashed in Mt. Salak in Cidahu, Sukabumi. Its wreckage was discovered the following day.
Eight Russian crew members, one American citizen and one French passenger were onboard along with 35 Indonesians.
Last week, an executive at Indonesian domestic carrier PT Kartika Airlines said that the delivery of 30 Russian Sukhoi Superjet 100 aircraft that his company had ordered would likely also be delayed following the plane crash.
Another Indonesian carrier, Queen Air, which ordered six Sukhoi aircraft, has yet to confirm whether they will cancel their order. (asa)