Malaysia targets 20 Chinese destinations in five years

first_imgMalaysia Airlines predicts it will be flying directly to 20 Chinese cities within five years after a rapid expansion which will add 11 new routes into China next year.The expansion will see the Malaysian carrier add 35 frequencies between the two countries as it services eight new destinations.Malaysia Airlines’ chief exdecutive Peter Bellew said the carrier planned to triple its Chinese business over the next five years.“I see potential for direct flights to 20 Chinese cities from Kuala Lumpur, Penang, Kota Kinabalu and Kuching by 2019,’’ he said. “We have huge confidence in China.’’Malaysia will be flying from Kuala Lumpur  to Haikou, Nanjing, Fuzhou, Wuhan, Chengdu and Chongqing.  Plans are also underway to fly from Kota Kinabalu to Tianjin as well as from Penang to Shenzhen and Shanghai.The new routes are expected to be complemented by a  second daily flight in April  between Kuala Lumpur and Shanghai, subject to slot availability, and  an upgrade to its morning Kuala Lumpur-Hong Kong sector from a Boeing 737 to the Airbus 330.Mr Bellew said the improved connectivity would foster deeper business links between the two nations.“In addition to this initial growth, we will promote tourism in Malaysia and China through seasonal or ad-hoc services to key leisure markets such as Langkawi, Kuching and Kota Kinabalu,” he said. “Six of our new Chinese cities have never been served directly by a Malaysian airline.’’The news was not so good for  Singapore Airlines which has been forced to delay its Singapore-Jakarta-Sydney service due to maintenance at Jakarta’s  Soekarno-Hatta International Airport.SIA had  announced the launch of the three-times-weekly service on November 23 and had been issued the appropriate approval and been issued with landing and take-off slots.“However, SIA has been informed by the Indonesian civil aviation authorities that they are now unable to approve the flights due to runway maintenance works at Jakarta’s Soekarno-Hatta International Airport, which also affect other airlines,’’ the Singaporean carrier said this week.“SIA will progressively contact customers with bookings on this route and help put them on other flights. The Airline apologises for the inconvenience caused to our customers.’’last_img

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