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SIN / KUL Open Skies... A Reality Soon?  
User currently offlineRyanair!!! From Australia, joined Mar 2002, 4757 posts, RR: 25
Posted (7 years 10 months 2 weeks 6 days 20 hours ago) and read 2204 times:

BANGKOK: Malaysia and Singapore have agreed in principle to mutually open up their entire aviation sector before the end of the year.
That's according to the transport ministers of both countries.

They were speaking after a bilateral meeting on the sidelines of an Asean meeting in Bangkok.

Singapore Transport Minister Raymond Lim revealed that liberalisation talks have now expanded to include the entire Malaysian aviation sector.

He said: "We agreed that we should bring forward the Asean milestone for unlimited access to capital cities. We should do it early (earlier than 2008). Air talks should not be confined to Singapore-Kuala Lumpur sector. It should be Singapore-Malaysia, so there are other points in Malaysia."

Mr Lim was referring to the agreement by Asean transport ministers last year that by the end of 2008 there would be free passage of capital-to-capital flights among member countries, a declaration which also applies to budget airlines.

His Malaysian counterpart, Chan Kong Choy, also agreed that widening the scope of liberalisation will benefit both countries in terms of trade promotion and tourism.

Mr Chan added that other carriers, and not just budget airlines, will be able to vie for a piece of the market as it would be free to all.

Malaysia's budget airline AirAsia and its Singapore counterpart Tiger Airways have long been eyeing the lucrative KL-Singapore route that has been monopolised by the national carriers of both countries under a 34-year-old air service agreement.

Both the Malaysia Airlines and the Singapore Airlines (SIA) currently operate over 200 flights a week and charging as much as US$130 for a 45-minute flight.

Transport officials from both sides will meet in March to iron out the details of the proposed liberalisation.

The Malaysian transport minister says that he is confident the talks will end before the ministers meet again in November. - CNA/ir

http://sg.news.yahoo.com/070209/5/singapore257432.html


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12 replies: All unread, jump to last
 
User currently offlineAirpearl From Malaysia, joined May 2001, 959 posts, RR: 26
Reply 1, posted (7 years 10 months 2 weeks 6 days 19 hours ago) and read 2171 times:

There'll be lot of hard negotiations before then, I think. And the big losers will be MAS and KLIA.

For MAS, it will not only be on the KUL-SIN route that they will lose revenue with the new competition. Can you imagine the city pairs that will open up with open skies? (Think LCCs flying SIN to Kuantan, Kuala Terengganu, Kota Bharu, Ipoh, Miri, Sibu, Bintulu, Sandakan in addition to the current lot)
Traffic to/from these provinces previously channelled thru KUL will now have the alternative of SIN, with its much better connectivity.

AirAsia with its aggressive stance and cheap fares will grow the market (as it had done domestically in Malaysia), but I think it will be feeding passengers into the Changi hub as much as it is bringing them into its own base at KLIA.

All in all, great for tourism and trade in Malaysia, but goodbye KLIA's hopes as a regional hub. It never was, and never will be. With SIN as the new gateway to Malaysia, maybe its time to finally shut down MAS.  Wink


User currently offlineNimish From India, joined Feb 2005, 3284 posts, RR: 10
Reply 2, posted (7 years 10 months 2 weeks 6 days 18 hours ago) and read 2133 times:

Quoting Airpearl (Reply 1):
With SIN as the new gateway to Malaysia, maybe its time to finally shut down MAS

Oooh - wicked  Wink

Sounds like AK is anyway soon going to overtake MH's role as Malaysia's global carrier - but I guess MH will continue for a little while longer Big grin



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User currently offlinePe@rson From United Kingdom, joined Jan 2001, 19259 posts, RR: 52
Reply 3, posted (7 years 10 months 2 weeks 6 days 18 hours ago) and read 2133 times:

I can't wait for discount airlines to begin SIN-KUL-SIN (or, for AK, KUL-SIN-KUL). It's high time more competition is permitted on that route.

I also can't wait for SIN-PEN, -LGK, -KCH, -BKI...



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User currently offlineRyanair!!! From Australia, joined Mar 2002, 4757 posts, RR: 25
Reply 4, posted (7 years 10 months 2 weeks 6 days 8 hours ago) and read 1998 times:

Quoting Airpearl (Reply 1):
It never was, and never will be. With SIN as the new gateway to Malaysia, maybe its time to finally shut down MAS.

Now now don't be so quick quick to kill off MAS. That airline has been for a long time rested on the laurels of govt hand outs and have been basically too "tidak apa" to do anything about it. Granted it is a great airline with excellent cabin crew but at the end of the day, if you do not rise up to the competition, nothing will happen and it definitely will not be served to you on a silver platter.

Malaysia is a country with an abundance of natural resources and this should not be forgotten, versus their pesky little neighbour down south that has none.

Likewise the same can be said for MAS. It needs to rise up to the challenge and quit complaining that the market conditions are too tough. The latest BTP seems to have some hope... but if you look deeper, the so called profits are from selling off their assets. Yield management is still a churning cauldron of disaster-filled recipes.

Perhaps it is time to learn a lesson or two about how SIA managed to fly high despite operating from a base that isn't exactly rosy for a flag carrier.

I do not see this as an end to MAS. I see this as a chance for MAS to rise from the doldrums and make things right, to prove their critics wrong. And a chance to start their fundamentals anew and continue towards the horizon as an airline with a staff that is willing to fight for their company, not one that sucks it dry.



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User currently offlineKeno From Malaysia, joined Feb 2004, 1842 posts, RR: 27
Reply 5, posted (7 years 10 months 2 weeks 6 days 7 hours ago) and read 1964 times:

Quoting Airpearl (Reply 1):
With SIN as the new gateway to Malaysia, maybe its time to finally shut down MAS

I wouldn't go as far as shutting down MAS, but I would welcome the prospect of reviving MSA
 Big grin


User currently offlineAirpearl From Malaysia, joined May 2001, 959 posts, RR: 26
Reply 6, posted (7 years 10 months 2 weeks 6 days 4 hours ago) and read 1914 times:

Quoting Ryanair!!! (Reply 4):
do not see this as an end to MAS. I see this as a chance for MAS to rise from the doldrums and make things right, to prove their critics wrong. And a chance to start their fundamentals anew and continue towards the horizon as an airline with a staff that is willing to fight for their company, not one that sucks it dry.

Well I hope you're right Ryan. MAS has been given more than one chance to start afresh, and has blown it every time. The rent-seeking political culture has a lot do with it and the problems are not just limited to the airline. The new management is doing some things right, but I wonder if it's too little too late. And besides, the most important changes are probably taboo anyway.



Quoting Keno (Reply 5):
I wouldn't go as far as shutting down MAS, but I would welcome the prospect of reviving MSA

MSA's base was Singapore - so its kinda like back to the future huh  Wink


User currently offlineRyanair!!! From Australia, joined Mar 2002, 4757 posts, RR: 25
Reply 7, posted (7 years 10 months 2 weeks 5 days 21 hours ago) and read 1848 times:

Quoting Keno (Reply 5):
I wouldn't go as far as shutting down MAS, but I would welcome the prospect of reviving MSA

We all know what a disaster the MSA arrangement was for the 2 countries. Singapore wanted international expansion, Malaysia wanted national coverage. The latter is sadly still prevalent in the Malaysian aviation political psyche.

That being said, I understand the need for a country as vast as Malaysia to be well connected. Granted the government has done a good job with the roads (you guys can thank Mahathir's vision for that, despite) and that links between Sabah / Sarawak and Peninsular will always need to have these vital air links maintained.

Therefore I suggest that the domestic sector be left in the hands of the government that way they can cover as much of the countries they want with their fleet of 737s and F50 (get them back from FAX). Leave Malaysia Airlines to concentrate on international routes with 2 hubs, one in KUL and the other smaller on in BKI. Stop, once and for all, local governments from trying to attract tourists to their states by demanding direct internation flights into their respective capitals.

Thus, Penerbangan Malaysia Antara Bangsa (MAS Int'l) and Penerbangan Malaysia Dalam Negri (MAS Domestic) will function as 2 separate entities with connection concentration at the 2 hubs I mentioned. That way, MAS AB can slowly be privatised while MASDom still remains in the hands of the govt. Keeping 2 separate account books in this manner will hopefully give some well deserved acknowledgement to the hardworking cabin crew via some bonuses and profit sharing.



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User currently offlineGneissGuy From Singapore, joined Jul 2006, 200 posts, RR: 0
Reply 8, posted (7 years 10 months 2 weeks 3 days 15 hours ago) and read 1717 times:

MAS makes 10% of their total profit from the SIN-KUL route.

This is how dependent they are, and i think they will lose out a lot, especially with all the feeder traffic now possible into SIN. Of course this is good news for Air Asia, Tiger Airways, to some extent SIA and definitely Changi Airport.


User currently offlineRyanair!!! From Australia, joined Mar 2002, 4757 posts, RR: 25
Reply 9, posted (7 years 10 months 2 weeks 2 days 19 hours ago) and read 1614 times:

Quoting Airpearl (Reply 6):
And besides, the most important changes are probably taboo anyway.

Taboo as it may seem... the government either needs to realise that the airline needs to function on her own accord without any interference, otherwise fund it 100% if they want to dictate where they want it to fly for prestige reasons. It is indeed very geram to talk about the future of MAS when it is obvious that the present team wants the airline to be profitable but the government policies hold it back many times.



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User currently offlineAirpearl From Malaysia, joined May 2001, 959 posts, RR: 26
Reply 10, posted (7 years 10 months 2 weeks 2 days 18 hours ago) and read 1591 times:

Quoting Ryanair!!! (Reply 9):
Taboo as it may seem... the government either needs to realise that the airline needs to function on her own accord without any interference, otherwise fund it 100% if they want to dictate where they want it to fly for prestige reasons. It is indeed very geram to talk about the future of MAS when it is obvious that the present team wants the airline to be profitable but the government policies hold it back many times.

The question that's not asked is why Malaysia needs MAS at all? Are the objectives underlying MAS' formation 35 years ago still valid today? I am not saying that Malaysia doesn't need MAS, but if those questions are not properly addressed and debated, M'sians will be in this perpetual cycle of arguing commercial interests vs. social responsibility. Certainly, they are not incompatible but what are the priorities? And with the emergence of AirAsia, how much of these have changed? The Malaysian government (and by proxy, its people) needs to determine that. It's clear that MAS cannot be seen purely as a commercial operation - there is a bigger nation-building agenda. If MAS is making a financial loss and needs a subsidy, it eventually comes from the public purse. If the reason for that 'loss' is anticipated as the cost of providing a social or public service that is accepted as necessary for the country's development, then so be it. Don't blame the airline or its CEO for following orders.

Your idea of two separate entities to operate domestic and international routes is an interesting solution, and had been mooted before. However, if one of the government's key objectives for maintaining an airline is tourism promotion, then I don't think MAS Int'l will escape meddling either.
Meddling is a bad word, but it isn't so bad, per se, if it is done transparently, and is intended to put the airline back on the straight and narrow (assuming that a path is set, of course). That's why I think the current scenario of MAS as a public listed company with the gvernment as majority shareholder is a better bet than a 100% government-owned firm. As a plc, both the government and MAS are forced into at least a form of transparency in what they do, something that'll be lacking if was just a govt-linked company.


User currently offlineOdiE From United States of America, joined Jan 2001, 1641 posts, RR: 1
Reply 11, posted (7 years 10 months 2 weeks 2 days 15 hours ago) and read 1558 times:

Quoting GneissGuy (Reply 8):
MAS makes 10% of their total profit from the SIN-KUL route.

I am curious how did you come up with this figure. MAS is not a transparent carrier per se, and unless you know someone who works in MAS' accounting department, I find it hard to believe the accuracy of this figure.


User currently offlineGneissGuy From Singapore, joined Jul 2006, 200 posts, RR: 0
Reply 12, posted (7 years 10 months 2 weeks 2 days 11 hours ago) and read 1492 times:

Quoting OdiE (Reply 11):
Quoting GneissGuy (Reply 8):
MAS makes 10% of their total profit from the SIN-KUL route.

I am curious how did you come up with this figure. MAS is not a transparent carrier per se, and unless you know someone who works in MAS' accounting department, I find it hard to believe the accuracy of this figure.

Here's the link:

http://www.todayonline.com/articles/170969.asp

The liberalisation could harm MAS, said aviation analyst Shukor Yusof. "Something like 10 per cent of their revenue comes from this Singapore-KL route."


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