Riau Airlines Status

Last updated: December 13, 2010

The woes of Riau Airlines, as it remains grounded due to financial and regulatory problems.

Since August 2010 all five Riau Airlines planes (Fokker 50 models) have been grounded due to financial problems in the company; Riau Airlines creditor Bank Muamalat complains of late loan repayments, while the American owner of the planes, AeroCentury, complains of late rent payments.

In an attempt to get around their inability to make use of the Fokker 50 planes Riau Airlines had planned to fly Boeing 737-500’s, however the Department of Transportation has soured the plan, saying that the company has an insufficient number of pilots able to fly the 737-500.

According to departmental regulations, airlines need at least three sets of qualified pilots, that is a total of six pilots, whereas Riau has only one set of pilots sufficiently qualified.

In the meantime, Riau Airlines remains inoperational.

Update 18th Nov 2010

Riau Airlines has managed to persuade the Department of Transportation to give permission for the use of two Boeing 737-500 aircraft, according to Governor of Riau HM Rusli Zainal, and on 17th November carried out a test flight at Halim Perdana Kusuma airport in Jakarta; it is expected these planes will be flown to Pekanbaru by the end of the month and be put into service.

Update 27th Nov 2010

In further good news for the future of Riau Airlines the provincial government has announced the company will receive a cash injection of 15 billion rupiah in 2011, allocated from the budget.

The government of Riau is the majority shareholder in Riau Airlines, owning 50.6% of the company, while the remaining ownership is split up among various other regional governments in Sumatra.

Update 13th Dec 2010

Riau Airlines will run ‘proving flights’ on 14th-15th December with its Boeing 737-500 craft and will begin operating normally on its traditional routes Pekanbaru-Malaka, Malaysia ; Pekanbaru-Tanjung Pinang; Tanjung Pinang-Natuna, on 22nd December 2010, once a day each.

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