Malaysia Airports traffic shrinks 98%

KUALA LUMPUR, 14 May 2020: Malaysia Airports Holdings (MAHB) released a traffic snapshot this week that shows passenger movements throughout its system shrank by 98.8% in April.

MAHB recorded only 137,000 passengers in April due to the national lockdown or Movement Control Order.

International flights registered a 99.3% decline with passenger traffic of 39,000 in April while domestic passenger movements declined by 98.4% to just over 97,000 passengers.

The total MAHB system recorded 121.6 million passenger movements for the 12 months ending in April when compared with the same period ending April 2019.

In a filing lodged with the Bursa Malaysia, MAHB said April traffic was affected by the full enforcement of the MCO in Malaysia that restricted airport and airline operations to repatriation and cargo flights only.

“Local airlines have recommenced flights to key domestic routes with minimal frequencies from 29 April,  amid the MCO, with airlines collectively working with airports to ensure a safe environment with effective layers of measures to ensure a smooth and safe journey,” said the airline’s filing with the stock exchange.

Overall aircraft movements contracted by 91.6% with international and domestic aircraft movements diving by 92.9%  and 90.7%, respectively, over April 2019.

MAHB said the MCO, initially imposed for two weeks from 18 March with several extensions since was now expected to end on 9 June.

Flights were initially restricted to repatriation operations, to and from the international sector and on-going rescued Malaysians travellers to the domestic sector.

“Nevertheless, local airlines have since recommenced flights to key domestic routes with minimal frequencies from 29 April and are ready to increase more flights with the government’s endorsement to allow more inter-state border movements but with strict travelling guidelines.

“The latest announcement of a Conditional MCO (CMCO) from 4 May allowed almost all businesses to resume with tight SOP (standard operating procedure) guidelines, hence, allowing duty-free shops at our airports to restart their business,” MAHB said.

Moving forward, MAHB said heightening safety measures and innovative ways to resume travellers’ confidence via the technology approach would play a bigger role.

“A new norm of travelling that would see additional processes, mask enforcement and social distancing, among others, to ensure a safer travel experience is inevitable for the time being.

(Source: Bernama and Bursa Malaysia)