SUBANG, Jan 25 — Transport Minister Datuk Seri Wee Ka Siong has reiterated that the Sultan Abdul Aziz Shah Airport in Subang remains under the management and operational oversight of Malaysia Airports Holdings Bhd (MAHB).

Speaking to the media today, he said any business capital done by MAHB is based on the operating agreement between the government and the company.

He stressed that the Sultan Abdul Aziz Shah Airport will not be sold or privatised as it is a strategic government asset.

“Until now, MAHB is still authorised to operate the Sultan Abdul Aziz Shah in Subang so there is no change in that.

“Many people are of the view that the airport needs to be upgraded as every country has a city airport,” Wee said at the launching of the new airline SKS Airways and sending off its inaugural flight to Pulau Pangkor today.

The rights and operations of the Subang Airport remain as stipulated under the lease agreement with MAHB, where MAHB would operate, manage and maintain the airport, including occupying, using and controlling the airport until 2034 (under the operating agreement) and 2067 (lease agreement).

SKS Airways offers flights between Subang to Pangkor Island beginning January 26, Subang to Pulau Redang from January 31, and to Pulau Tioman from Subang and Johor Baru in the second quarter of 2022.

With the commencement of the three routes, there will be 12 scheduled flights per day at the full capacity of 228 passengers with all-in fares from RM160 one way.

Wee said there have been requests to revive the maintenance, repair and overhaul sector in Subang.

“This has to be seen in the context of careful planning by MAHB, Ministry of Finance, and the state government as the land belongs to the state government.

“I leave it to MAHB because they have discussions from time to time,” he added.

Meanwhile, the transport minister is expecting the airport passenger volume to be between 32.6 million and 49 million in Malaysia in 2022, depending on the Covid-19 situation.

“We must take bold steps such as VTL to Singapore, to boost our tourism sector,” he said, adding that new airlines such as SKS AIrways would cater to underserved and unserved areas such as Pulau Pangkor that would further increase the number of tourists in the country.

SKS Airways director Datuk Rohman Ahmad said the inaugural flight to Pulau Pangkor marked the beginning of the airline as a commercial airline, offering passenger, cargo and charter services. 

With its hubs in Subang and Senai, SKS Airways plans to connect Malaysia to destinations in Asean and southern China, he added.

“As a new set-up, we are nimble, agile and flexible, and able to tap into any opportunities that arise. We are positioning ourselves to capitalise on the current pent-up demand for domestic travel, and this will also give us a head start when international travel resumes,” said Rohman. — Bernama