Fernandes Upset with Mavcom over KLIA2 Service Charge

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From January, you pay RM73 or RM23 more for international flights at klia2, the same rate as at KLIA, although KLIA2 is viewed by many as not being on par with KLIA’s facilities and services.

Malaysia needs a low-cost airport with different passenger service charges (PSCs) to allow everyone to have a chance to fly, said AirAsia Group Chief Executive Officer, Tan Sri Tony Fernandes.

He criticised the move by airport regulator, Malaysian Aviation Commission (Mavcom) to equalise the PSC rates at Kuala Lumpur International Airport (KLIA) and Kuala Lumpur International Airport 2 (KLIA2).

“There are low-cost airlines, low-cost hotels and low-cost cars. Why not low-cost airports? One does not fit all. We fight for lower ERL (Express Rail Link Sdn Bhd) charges, encourage cheap buses and Uber pool and grab. Anything to lower cost to allow the common man to dream and fly,” he said on his Twitter account yesterday.

Fernandes said he was upset with the move, saying: “Why am I unhappy with Malaysia Airports Holdings Bhd (MAHB) and Mavcom because I want everyone to have a chance to fly.

“There are different sorts of travellers, one that have and one that don’t. We need two types of airports to give more of those who don’t have a chance to experience what those who have,” FERNANDES said.

Mavcom is looking at standardising the rates for both terminals and come January next year, the international PSCs at KLIA2 will be raised from RM50 to RM73, matching the rates for international departures at KLIA.

For domestic trips, the PSC was set at RM11 for all airports, from RM9 (KLIA), RM6 (KLIA2) and RM9 (other airports).

AirAsia had previously urged Mavcom to consider the differences in facilities and services between the two terminals before standardising the PSC.

However, according to MAHB, KLIA2 is not a low-cost airport terminal but a second permanent terminal for KLIA that was built to accommodate the airport’s future growth.

In a statement yesterday, MAHB said the decision to equalise the PSC rates is to facilitate fairer competition between the airlines operating at both terminals.

MAHB was responding to a claim by DAP’s Tony Pua that Mavcom’s decision to equalise the fees is unreasonable as the quality of service at KLIA2 was claimed to be inferior when compared with KLIA.

Meanwhile, Mavcom executive chairman Tan Sri Abdullah Ahmad said the country’s PSC rates remain one of the cheapest in the region and in the world, even after the full equalisation.

He revealed that the government will be forced to fork out RM60 million in subsidies if the PSC rates are not equalised.

He said that passengers using the airport should rightly take up the higher charges, adding that the subsidies should be better used for the benefit of the rakyat.

Abdullah also stated Mavcom does not agree with AirAsia’s move to charge passengers a RM3 fee and calling it a KLIA fee with each ticket booked since they moved to KLIA2 from the LCCT three years ago. He stressed that it was unethical for the airline to collect the fee for itself but used other people’s name.