Citilink aims passenger growth of more than five times by 2015

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Indonesian carrier Citilink is targeting to increase its passenger numbers by more than five times within the next three years as it expands its fleet and takes advantage of Indonesia's booming aviation market.

The carrier, the low-cost arm of Garuda Indonesia, handled 2.9 million passengers in 2012. The aim is to grow this figure to 7.8 million by 2013 and to 17 million by 2015, its chief executive Arif Wibowo told Flightglobal in an interview.

By then, Citilink will have a fleet of 50 Airbus A320s and about 30 ATR 72-600 turboprops, he adds.

The carrier will phase out the last five of its Boeing 737s this year, and receive 10 A320s to add to its fleet of 14 A320s in operation.

With the additional aircraft, Citilink targets to more than double the routes on its network from 14 to 31 by year-end, says Wibowo.

"In 2013, our strategy is network penetration especially on domestic routes. We will also focus on making Citilink's cost structure competitive by maximising aircraft utilisation and to make it an attractive airline for Indonesia's growing younger generation," he adds.

Citilink, which completed its spin-off from parent Garuda last July, placed a firm order for 25 A320neos in January and recently signed an agreement for 25 ATR 72-600s, with an option for an additional 25.