Malaysia Wants to Double Airport’s Capacity

Malaysia, air transport, airports

Is the idea that Singapore is launching the construction of Terminal 4? Malaysia is now planning to double its airport’s capacity at Kuala Lumpur by planning to welcome 150 million passengers over the next ten to twenty years.

Talking to news agency Bloomberg, Raja Azmi Raja Nazuddin, chief financial officer of Malaysia Airports, highlighted plans to double Kuala Lumpur International Airport’s capacity as it seeks a bigger slice of the 2.1 billion more passengers expected in Asia Pacific in the next two decades.

KLIA could then be able to accommodate in the future up to 150 million passengers compared to the current 75 million. The expansion should take place in the next 10 to 20 years. MAHB CFO indicated that KLIA main terminal could reach full capacity in the next two years, he said.

In 2017, KLIA recorded 58.5 million passengers, up 11.2% over 2016. KLIA Main Terminal handled 10.7% more passengers at 28.2 million compared with 2016, while KLIA2 handled 30.3 million passengers, a growth of 11.6% over 2016.

Malaysia Airports sees passenger traffic across the airports it manages rising 6.3 percent this year as it banks on easier visa approvals for visitors from China and India.

In 2017, 16 airlines grew more than 20% at KLIA Main Terminal, while airlines at KLIA2 had a growth above 20% in 2017 over 2016.

 “We have started studies on the optimization and expansion,” Raja Azmi said, declining to comment on how much the plan will cost. “The outcome will determine the configuration that we will have to take within a year or two.”

Kuala Lumpur joins neighbouring cities Bangkok and Singapore in looking to expand airport capacity as routes in Asia Pacific are set to become among the world’s busiest, according to the International Air Transport Association.

Improving services is a focus for the company, whose ranking in the Airport Service Quality survey fell to 12th in 2017, from ninth the previous year, he said. In 2018, Malaysia Airports is seeking to be back among the top 10.

Forecasts for 2018 gives passengers’ growth at 6.3%, with international and domestic passenger traffic growing at 8.3% and 4.2% respectively.

As part of its five-year plan to diversify earnings, the company set up an international unit that will focus on managing or buying stakes in airfields in the Middle East and Asia. The company also operates airports in Turkey and Qatar.

(Source: Bloomberg)