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Europe lifts blacklist on Indonesian carriers

An Indonesian airline may soon be flying to an airport near you, now the country’s carriers are in the clear.

Airlines from Indonesia could be a regular sight at European hubs in the near future, despite having been blacklisted in 2007. All of the country’s carriers have now been removed from the European Commission’s airline blacklist.

Indonesia’s airlines found themselves on the blacklist as part of a whole-country ban eleven years ago. Since then, seven operators, including Garuda, its regional carrier Citilink and Lion Air, have been taken off the list.

Now the Commission reveals that the new version of its blacklist lifts the blanket ban on Indonesia completely – a decision that follows improvements in the country’s aviation safety situation, Flightglobal reports.

“After years of work we are today able to clear all air carriers from Indonesia,” said European transport commissioner Violeta Bulc. “It shows that hard work and close cooperation pay off.”

Fifteen countries featuring 114 airlines still have EU blanket bans due to weak regulatory oversight, while five other carriers are individually blacklisted, namely Air Zimbabwe, Iran Aseman Airlines, Iraqi Airways, Lagos-based Med-View Airlines and Suriname’s Blue Wing Airlines, and another six have operating restrictions against them.

Global audit
The EU’s decision comes after three Indonesian airlines – Garuda, Batik Air and Lion Air – had their safety rankings upgraded to the highest level as Indonesia passed a key international audit.

All were upgraded to the top safety tier – seven stars – by the global rating agency AirlineRatings, the result of a new audit of Indonesia’s compliance with the eight categories in the International Civil Aviation Organization Universal Safety Oversight Audit Programme.

All three airlines also completed the International Air Transport Association Operational Safety Audit, which is conducted every two years.

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