6 August 2016

Transport Minister Datuk Seri Liow Tiong Lai said the differential in the passenger service charge (PSC) at Kuala Lumpur International Airport (KLIA) and klia2 should not be an issue as the airports catered to airlines of different categories.

He said Malaysia Airlines (MAS) was welcome to operate from klia2 if it flew as a low-cost carrier.

By doing so, Liow said, MAS would enjoy the same PSC (formerly known as airport tax) as other budget airlines.

He said it was the government’s policy to support low-cost airlines by imposing a lower PSC.

“So I don’t see why MAS wants to question this now. Unless, MAS wants to fly as a low-cost carrier so that it can enjoy a lower PSC.

“In the past, MAS had a low-cost airline, so we welcome MAS to operate a low-cost airline again,” he said at the launch of Perlindungan & Indemniti Malaysia Sdn Bhd (P&I Malaysia), a government-initiated maritime insurance for small ships, here, yesterday.

Liow was commenting on MAS chief executive officer Peter Bellew’s call for a standardised PSC at KLIA and klia2.

Bellew had reportedly said that MAS was considering moving some of its flights to klia2 because the higher PSC at KLIA had impacted the national carrier’s profits.

He said the differential rates were unfair as MAS had to pay more than RM100 million extra annually.

Bellew said MAS would continue to demand fair treatment.

“Charges for international passengers at KLIA are RM33 more per person than they are at klia2.

“It is nuts that one airline gets a discount of RM5,940 for every international flight from klia2,” Bellew said, referring to AirAsia.

He said, if the PSC was not standardised by next April, MAS would be forced to operate some flights from klia2. He said the first routes would be new operations to China and North Asia, where there would be few connecting passengers.

“I hope the authorities change their mind and give fair competition for all airlines.

“I don’t want to operate from klia2. I just want a fair charge,” Bellew said.

MAS is not the only airline urging the Malaysia Aviation Commission (Mavcom) to introduce a standardised PSC when rates are expected to be revised by year’s end.

Fifty-one other carriers operating out of the two terminals in Sepang are also asking the authorities to impose the same PSC.

The Geneva-based International Air Transport Association (Iata) and the Association of Asia Pacific Airlines (Aapa) — both trade bodies — have written to Mavcom and Malaysia Airports Holdings Bhd to protest against the different PSC.

Iata asked the government for a solution that would be “revenue neutral to the airport operator” and that there should be no discrimination between users at KLIA and klia2.

Original Source: www.nst.com.my

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