Transport Ministry conducting study on airport development in Malaysia

The Penang International Airport terminal will be upgraded to raise its annual handling capacity to 12 million passengers. — Picture by Sayuti Zainudin
The Penang International Airport terminal will be upgraded to raise its annual handling capacity to 12 million passengers. — Picture by Sayuti Zainudin

KUALA LUMPUR, Oct 7 — The Transport Ministry says it is conducting a study, through the Malaysian Aviation Commission (Mavcom), to prepare the National Airports Strategic Plan (NASP).

Deputy Minister Datuk Kamarudin Jaffar said the document will be a reference for the government in the planning and development of airports in Malaysia. 

”In general, the NASP will outline the long-term plan to develop a more efficient and competitive airport system, as well as provide continuity with the transportation network and enhance connectivity between the various transport modes in Malaysia.

“The 18-month study is expected to be finalised the latest by December 2020,” he said in an oral question and answer session in Parliament today.

He was replying to a question from Datuk Ngeh Khoo Ham (PH-Beruas) on the government’s plan to expand existing airports or build new ones to meet the rising demand in the northern part of peninsular Malaysia covering Perak, Penang, Kedah and Perlis.

Kamarudin said in phase one, the Penang International Airport terminal will be upgraded to raise its annual handling capacity to 12 million passengers from 6.5 million passengers.

Parts one and two of phase two, which would enable the airport to improve its annual passenger handling capacity to 16 million and 20 million respectively, are still at the planning stage as they involve the acquisition of land, he explained.

Meanwhile, the government project to expand the Langkawi International Airport’s handling capacity to four million passengers annually from 1.5 million passengers was completed in August 2018, he noted.

“The government has a plan to upgrade the facilities at the airport especially with the construction of an aerobridge to further facilitate the operations of airlines that use wide-body aircraft like the Boeing B787,” he said.

Kamarudin added that the government has agreed with a proposal for a  privately-funded project to build the Kulim International Airport.

“However, the proposal is still at an early stage and is undergoing the relevant processes before it can be implemented,” he said.

On the Perak state government’s plan to lengthen the runway at the Sultan Azlan Shah Airport in lpoh so that it can receive international flights from China and India, he said the matter is still under discussion between the state and federal governments. — Bernama

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