MAHB’s airports record 76.8pc passenger movement decline for Q1 2021 due to MCO

A woman with a mask passes by a thermal screening point at the international arrival terminal of Kuala Lumpur International Airport in Sepang January 21, 2020. — Reuters pic
A woman with a mask passes by a thermal screening point at the international arrival terminal of Kuala Lumpur International Airport in Sepang January 21, 2020. — Reuters pic

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KUALA LUMPUR, April 16 — Malaysia Airports Holdings Bhd’s (MAHB) network of airports registered a decline of 76.8 per cent with 5.9 million passenger movements for first quarter (Q1) of 2021 due to re-imposition of the movement control order effective January 13, 2021 in Malaysia.

The company however said Istanbul Sabiha Gokcen International Airport (SGIA) continued to show gradual recovery in traffic, particularly the domestic sector following Turkey’s vaccine rollout from January, 2021.

“Domestic and international sectors declined by 68 per cent and 87.3 per cent respectively in Q1 2021 over the same corresponding period last year with 1.5 million and 4.4 million passenger movements respectively.

“On a twelve-month basis, the MAHB network of airports registered 23.4 million passenger movements, a reduction of 82.5 per cent over the previous corresponding period,” it said in its ‘Passenger Traffic Snapshot, March 2021’ for Bursa Malaysia today.   

It said Malaysia passenger movements contracted by 91 per cent while SGIA contracted by 40 per cent over Q1 2020.

“March 2021 passenger movements for the MAHB network of airports contracted by 53.4 per cent to 2.2 million passengers. Domestic and international sectors declined by 45.3 per cent and 67.8 per cent respectively.

“Malaysia passenger movements contracted by 82.1 per cent in March 2021. Domestic and international passenger movements decreased by 75.9 per cent and 91.9 per cent respectively,” it said.

Additionally, the company said SGIA passenger movements recorded positive growth for the first time since the Covid-19 pandemic outbreak, with a 7.4 per cent increase in March 2021 over March 2020.

“Domestic sector recorded double-digit growth of 11.4 per cent, while international sector registered a marginal decline of 1.9 per cent,” it said.

MAHB said Kota Kinabalu, Subang, Labuan, Lahad Datu, Sandakan and Tawau registered higher passenger movements for March 2021 compared to January and February passenger volumes.

“Traffic recovery would continue to rely on the efficacy of the vaccine rollout and the extent of travel restrictions of which Covid-19 spread would be brought under control locally as well internationally.

“Digital health travel passes and a more synchronised travel procedures across countries may encourage cross border travel and support in travel recovery,” it added. — Bernama