MCO: MAHB ready for travel bubble, border reopening, says CEO

A general view of KLIA2 on the first day of the relaxed movement control order, in Sepang June 10, 2020. — Picture by Ahmad Zamzahuri
A general view of KLIA2 on the first day of the relaxed movement control order, in Sepang June 10, 2020. — Picture by Ahmad Zamzahuri

KUALA LUMPUR, June 30 — Malaysia Airports Holdings Bhd (MAHB) is ready to accommodate travel bubble when the government agrees to reopen its international borders, said group chief executive officer Datuk Mohd Shukrie Mohd Salleh.

He said the airport operator did not stop its operation at all throughout the pandemic and had implemented additional precautionary measures to ensure the safety of passengers, including placing thermal scanners at airport, compulsory face masks usage and limited entry and exit points at Kuala Lumpur International Airport (KLIA).

“We have been operating. It’s just that the number of flights has been reduced to below 5 per cent. Even at the peak of the pandemic, we were still processing around 5,000 to 10,000 passengers a day through KLIA with a couple of flights meant to repatriate our people from around the world.

“We have been handling (the traffic), the only thing now is how to scale-up the real bottle-neck going forward. (What) we need to ensure that we are fully ready is Covid-19 test results,” he said during a media briefing after MAHB’s annual general meeting here today.

Mohd Shukrie said the test would usually take a couple of hours to be ready, which could affect the smoothness of the entire passenger traffic at the airport.

Malaysia is considering implementing ‘travel bubble’ with six countries namely Singapore, Brunei, Australia, New Zealand, Japan and South Korea.

The decision, however, has not being finalised yet as mutual agreement on the mutual standard operating procedures (SOPs) with the countries are still in discussion. — Bernama

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