I thought MAS had no restrictions into/out of UK as long as LHR and LGW is not involved. So I believe that MAS should have no problems obtaining rights for the flight to New York via Manchester. I maybe wrong though, but I read somewhere pretty long time ago that MAS were offered rights at Manchester instead of London for their trans-Atlantic services. If they did not take up the rights, will they be withdrawn? Like I said, Amsterdam seems like a good option, when they can combine KL, CO and NWA who are all flying on that route. This could well make one of the "Wings" Alliance route.
I'd just been on a Embraer 145 aircraft and the aircraft is really comfortable. MAS should really consider that aircraft for regional use. Then, they could well provide high frequency services to thin routes in Peninsular Malaysia such as Ipoh, Penang, Langkawi, johor Bahru, Kuantan instead of only a couple of flights a day using a B737. This is what most airlines in Europe/USA is doing. And I know that Embraer is trying to penetrate into the SE Asian market, maybe MAS would be its launch customer in this region?
As far as Scandinavia is concerned, they should really fly to Copenhagen or at least a point in Scandinavia instead of code-sharing with KLM. They would still continue the code-share, but then again, on a code-share flight, you will have to pay a bit more compared to a direct MAS flight. If you look at Scandinavia-SE Asia flights, they are all monopolized by Star carriers, Thai, SIA and SAS. Thus, MAS flying into Scandinavia would be really great, though there will be tough competition. Like I said, there are plenty of Scandinavian companies in Malaysia which could well generate premium traffic.
MAS is evaluating the option of flying into Christchurch as well, according to a local daily. But then again, whether or not the plan materialize is another thing. As far as I know, MAS is planning to fly into Kunming and Chengdu in China first. Then, they are asking the Indian CAA for more landing rights into India, given that MAS only have limited services into India.
There have to be a reason why MAS kept their office in Geneva and Dublin opened and the rest of them in Nice, Berlin, Munich, Madrid, Glasgow etc. closed. From what I see in their website, they had just shifted their Dublin office. Maybe they are planning to fly into these cities, but then again, Geneva have good connections onto MAS' flights at Zurich.
MAS also planned to serve San Francisco in the past, but then the plans were dropped after the 1997 economic crisis. They should probably rethink that plan again now, after all, they could well connect San Francisco with Penang and Bangalore, one of the Silicon Vallies in the East (where MAS fly to as well). Madrid were previously served by MAS but were dropped due to economical reasons, so no point returning there. Now obtaining fifth freedom rights at correct Asian cities is another problem, now that MAS recently increased their KUL-TPE-LAX to daily. Do they still have the fifth freedom rights at NRT? That would be good.
In my opinion, it's better to fly into Sao Paulo as well, if they really want to fly into South America. After all, that's like the financial center of Latin America. Even SAA suspend their EZE flights in favor of flights to Sao Paulo. But then again, they already had got themselves established at Argentina.
Ireland only have it's embassy in Malaysia for the whole ASEAN region?