Bali’s Air Paradise Still Searching for Investors
LEGIAN ~ Bankrupt Air Paradise International has thus far not secured any investors and therefore has no immediate plans to resume operations, The Bali Times has learned.
“We are still searching for investors and we are having discussions with some potential investors,” Air Paradise director Oka Semadi told The Times.
He said some were based overseas and that there was considerable interest in acquiring a stake in the currently non-operational airline.
Air Paradise, owned by Bali tourism-sector businessman Kadek Wiranatha, closed without warning two months after the second bombings here in October 2005, citing a lack of demand on its then sole Australia routes.
Possible suggested new flights for a revamped Air Paradise could include the lucrative Bali-Jakarta route. However, an update on the company’s website, dated March 4, 2009, bills the carrier as “the newest budget airline to hit Australia” with a wide range of destinations in Australia.
Semadi denied earlier media reports that said the company reportedly sold a 49-percent stake – the maximum foreign purchase allowed under Indonesian law – to an Australian airline, after failing to net investment from then Bali governor Dewa Beratha, who had expressed interest in reviving the island’s only international airline.
“That is not true. That is only a rumour,” he said, adding that there had been no follow-up discussions with current Bali Governor I Made Mangku Pastika.
“Bali needs to have its own airline; it’s very important,” said Semadi.Filed under: Headlines