Sarawak agrees in principle to take over MASWings, premier says
State leader notes plans include increasing domestic flights, moderating ticket pricie
KUCHING – Sarawak has agreed in principle to take over MASWings, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Malaysia Airlines Bhd (MAB), to be rebranded as a boutique airline owned by the state government, Sarawak Premier Tan Sri Abang Johari Openg said.
He said MASWings, which currently only operates in the interior region of Borneo, would be given a new lease of life with the addition of flight destinations and the usage of sustainable aviation fuel (SAF) by its aircraft.
“We want to increase domestic flights, especially to Kuala Lumpur, and international flights such as Singapore.
“Name (of the rebranded airline) is secondary but what is important is our objective to moderate the (ticket) price,” he told reporters after witnessing the signing of a memorandum of understanding between state-owned Hornbill Skyways Sdn Bhd and petroleum arrangement contractors here.
Without disclosing the timeline of the rebranding process, he said the move to take over the airline had been proposed to the federal government recently.
On Monday, Deputy Transport Minister Datuk Hasbi Habibollah told the Dewan Rakyat that the Malaysian Aviation Commission is expected to hold a meeting with the Sarawak government to discuss matters related to boutique airlines in the state.
On April 17, Prime Minister Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim agreed in principle with the Sarawak Government’s proposal to establish a boutique airline.
He said the establishment of the airline could ease the situation of expensive fares, especially between Peninsular Malaysia and Sabah and Sarawak.
– Bernama, June 15, 2023