The Indonesian Government has painted a rosy picture of its national airline's financial performance in 1998, claiming an operating profit for Garuda Indonesia resulting from a fourth-quarter boost in load factors.

The figures, claiming a profit of Rp905 billion ($109 million) up to 31 December, 1998, come from the Ministry of Empowerment of State-Owned Enterprises, which oversees the airline. No further details or figures have been released to explain the unexpectedly optimistic claim, apart from Garuda's assertion that its 1998 operating revenues totalled Rp10 trillion, and that these figures are preliminary. Observers have greeted the announcement with considerable scepticism. Last year, the ministry predicted a net loss of Rp3.25 trillion.

Source: Flight International