AirAsia in talks to start Melaka flights this year, says exco

Melaka Public Works, Transport and Public Facilities Committee chairman Datuk Mohd Sofi Abdul Wahab said among the potential routes proposed by AirAsia were Melaka-Langkawi and Melaka-Bandar Seri Begawan. — Reuters pic
Melaka Public Works, Transport and Public Facilities Committee chairman Datuk Mohd Sofi Abdul Wahab said among the potential routes proposed by AirAsia were Melaka-Langkawi and Melaka-Bandar Seri Begawan. — Reuters pic

MELAKA, Jan 18 — Low-cost airline AirAsia Bhd is expected to start operations at the Melaka International Airport (LTAM) in Batu Berendam here with the launch of at least a domestic or an international flight route this year.

Melaka Public Works, Transport and Public Facilities Committee chairman Datuk Mohd Sofi Abdul Wahab said among the potential routes proposed by AirAsia were Melaka-Langkawi and Melaka-Bandar Seri Begawan, besides existing routes — Melaka-Penang and Melaka-Pekan Baru, operated by Malindo Air.

He said the opening of the new route through the cooperation with AirAsia was among the state government’s efforts to introduce more flight routes at LTAM, apart from helping in the success of Visit Melaka Year 2019.

“The discussions were held with AirAsia led by its chief executive officer Riad Asmat at the airline’s headquarters at RedQ KLIA2 today, and also attended by representatives from the Civil Aviation Authority of Malaysia, Malaysia Airports Holdings Bhd and Melaka state Economic Planning Unit, including the state government’s offer to AirAsia to start flight routes at LTAM.

"The outcome of the meeting was positive when AirAsia voiced its readiness to start flight operations of at least one flight route this year. This effort will be continued via further discussions to ensure it becomes a reality,” he said in a statement here, today.

He said if AirAsia’s operations at LTAM was successfully realised, it would be able to increase the state’s economy through additional tourist arrivals to Melaka, thus, further improving the economic activities of local residents.

Meanwhile, Mohd Sofi said the state government was committed to helping and collaborating with local or international airline companies to make LTAM as the best aviation hub in the southern region of Peninsular Malaysia. — Bernama