TheStar : Thursday October 17

SEPANG: Malaysia Airports Holdings Bhd (MAHB) maintains that KL International Airport 2 or KLIA2 is 94% completed and is scheduled to open by the May 2, 2014 deadline. 

 CIMB Bank Bhd director and head of consumer sales and distribution Datuk Sulaiman Mohd Tahir receiving a certificate from Aziz (second from left). Looking on  are (from left) Faizah, MAHB MD Tan Sri Bashir Ahmad Abdul Majid and Abd Hamid.

Chief operating officer Datuk Abd Hamid Mohd Ali said the terminal building was 99% completed and overall completion was 94%.

“We’re at the finishing work stage. The taxiway is on the final layer (of works),” he said after the certificate presentation on recognition of outstanding brand concepts at KLIA2 to commercial business partners by Deputy Transport Minister Datuk Abdul Aziz Kaprawi yesterday.

Aziz said “construction of the KLIA2 was progressing as scheduled” and expected it to be operational by May 2 next year.

In addition, he said trial landing on the third runway at KLIA2 had been conducted successfully last week.

“KLIA2 is poised to be another landmark in Malaysia. The airport retail experience would add significant value and flavour to making Malaysia a preferred transit point and tourist destination,” Aziz said.

MAHB senior general manager commercial services Faizah Khairuddin expected 80% occupancy rate on the first day of operations at the KLIA2.

“KLIA2 is constructed with one of the highest percentage of retail space offered by any commercial airports. Some 12% of gross floor area is dedicated to customer fronting commercial offerings whereby about 60% of the total commercial offerings are for retail and another 40% for food and beverages,” she said, adding that 7,000 jobs opportunities would be created.

About 33% of successful tenderers for retail lots were completely new to airport commercial environment, Faizah said.

She added that MAHB recorded 40% of successful bumiputra tenderers, the highest composition in the current retail complexes.

The business partners at KLIA2 will be given two to three months to complete their renovations by March 15, 2014 for final inspection.

Aziz said KLIA2 would encourage economic growth as well as strengthening the development of tourism and aviation industry.

“The Government aims to increase the arrival of medium-haul tourists including from Australia, China, India, South Korea and Taiwan to 25% in 2020 from 15% in 2010,” he said.


TheStar :  Friday October 18

PETALING JAYA: An online survey ranked Kuala Lumpur International Airport (KLIA) the eighth best airport in the world to sleep in this year, while the nearby Low Cost Carrier Terminal (LCCT) was recognised as one of the worst in Asia.

 Online survey ranked Kuala Lumpur International Airport (KLIA) the eighth best airport in the world to sleep.

Drafted by the Guide to Sleeping in Airports website (www.sleepinginairports.net), the Oct 2013 survey said travellers enjoyed dozing off on KLIA's long benches and reclining rest chairs.

"The best sleep can be had in the designated rest areas (airside) and the benches on the fourth floor (landside). Showers are available for a fee. Food is available 24-hours," said the website Friday.

Travellers such as online user hilman91 praised the airport's comfortable surroundings.

"Pleasantly long movable benches were available and we pushed some vacant ones creating a small bed," the user said.

The user added that KLIA was "extremely quiet" and that the airport dimmed its lights after midnight.

The airport was ranked by the website as the world's fifth best last year, and fourth in 2011.

The Star previously cited Malaysia Airports saying that the airport was designed to give every person coming to KLIA about 55sq metres of free space.

Three other airports in Asia were also in this year's top 10 list, with Singapore's Changi crowned the world's best, followed by South Korea's Incheon at second and the Hong Kong International at fourth.

Meanwhile, the LCCT climbed two places to seventh under the "Worst Airports in Asia" list this year.

Some travellers even advised others to take a 20km bus ride to KLIA instead of roughing it out at the LCCT.

Commenting on it, reviewer 5ftman said: "It's a barebones basic low cost budget terminal. No frills. I'd advise turning up as late as possible or dying from the sheer tedium of the place!"

The Sleeping in Airports website is dedicated to advising travellers or people stuck in transit about the best and the worst airports to sleep in.


TheStar : Sunday October 27

BATU PAHAT: Procurement for the new traffic control management centre will begin early next year, said Deputy Transport Minister Datuk Abdul Aziz Kaprawi.

He said bidders would be invited for the project at the Kuala Lumpur International Airport (KLIA), which comprised a complex with a modern air traffic control system.

"Land for the project has been identified and an open tender process will begin early next year," he said after launching of a Warriors' Day fund and gotong-royong at Parit Raja Sunday.

When tabling the Budget 2014 last Friday, Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak announced an allocation of RM700mil to build the air traffic control centre at KLIA.

Abdul Aziz, who is Parit Raja MP, said the new centre would replace the 20-year old air traffic control system in Subang.

He said the new system would improve flight movement in Peninsula Malaysia, particularly KLIA. He said the new system could increase the frequency of lights from 60 per hour to 100 per hour.

"Although we have three runways they are too congested as we do not have a system that allows two airplanes to take off and land at the same time.

"With the new system, our airports will be able to accommodate flights more efficiently," he said.

Abdul Aziz added that the new system would also enhance the aviation industry and make the country an aviation hub in South East Asia.

"With good and advance services available, Malaysia could be a transit destination and this could boost tourism, " he said.


TheStar : Monday October 7

 Malindo Air Boeing 737-900ER - Pic by BK Sidhu

KUALA LUMPUR: The trial landing of the first commercial aircraft Malindo Air Boeing 737-900ER on KLIA's third runway was successfully completed at 9.55am on Monday.

The third runway, the first in Southeast Asia, was built by KUB Malaysia Bhd and within the time frame set.

The trial conducted was to test the smoothness and evenness of the runway and signifies the project’s completion.

The runway is 3,960m long and 60m wide. It is near the KLIA2 which is under construction.

Till then, see ya~


NST : 4 OCT 2013

Kuala Lumpur : The Civil Aviation Department plans to construct a new Air Traffic Control Centre (ATCC) at the Kuala Lumpur International Airport (KLIA) in Sepang to resolve flights cancellation problems, the Dewan Rakyat was told yesterday.
Deputy Transport Minister Datuk Abdul Aziz Kardawi said a value management exercise conducted showed a total of RM426 million was needed to set up the control centre, equipped with a variety of new air traffic control equipment.
“This is one of the approach planned to increase flights movement capacity,” he said in reply to a question from Datuk Jumat Idris (BN- Sepanggar)  who raised concerns on the continuous flight cancellations which has been occurring of late.
Abdul Aziz said the problem arose due to a rapid increase in flight movements in the past 12 months.
“The average air movements rose from 750 movements daily to 950 movements at KLIA during the period.
“The recent haze problems and change in the winds had also compounded the problem, where the airport management had switched lanes to ensure a smooth and safe operations for flight arrival and departure.
“A delay of the departure and landing of an aircraft will have a domino effect on the entire flights schedules,” he said.


KUALA LUMPUR (Sept 19, 2013): There is not much change in the unemployment rate of pilots in Malaysia since last year, said Datuk Azharuddin Abd Rahim, Director-General of Department of Civil Aviation (DCA). 

The number of unemployed licensed pilots as of August 2012 stood at 1,174. He said the employment of pilots like any other profession in the world would be based on the supply and demand in the job market and the excess was noticeable since 2011 and soared last year when many of them made complaints to the DCA. 

"In early 2000, there was a sudden high demand for pilots by Malaysia Airlines that Malaysia's only flying academy at the time, Malaysian Flying Academy (MFA), was not able to cope. 

"Following this, DCA had approved four Australia's flight training organisations for us to send our student pilots," he told Bernama in an interview recently. 

MFA is the only local approved flying training organisation (AFTO) in the country that has been producing pilots in the country. However, Azharuddin said due to concerns on high cost and foreign exchange, Malaysian aviation entrepreneurs were invited to participate in the pilots training business. 

In 2005, there were eight AFTOs in the country but three were revoked in 2011 for non-compliance of technical requirements. Each AFTO were at one time capable of producing 50-60 pilots annually. 

"In 2011, global aviation industry faced a spiral downturn with the rise of fuel prices. This resulted in airlines cutting down routes, not buying new aircraft and even ground their aircraft to review the operations, with no expansion," he said. 

He added that as Malaysia does not have many airlines, the economic uncertainties which also affected the local airlines led to less demand for pilots. 

To qualify as an airline pilot, privately funded students have to pay at least RM250,000 and a few good students will be taken as cadets by airlines and sponsored by the airlines. 

Student pilots need to pass a few levels from student pilot to commercial pilot, then upgraded to airline transport pilot licence, which is the highest level which will take them 18 months to two years to complete without unnecessary obstacles. 

Azharuddin said to address the unemployment issue, DCA has set up a registration centre on the department's website to help those who are unable to get employment. 

However, he said the response was low with less than 500 people registered to date, thus the department was unable to track and get actual figures of the unemployed.

"We have also encouraged airlines to employ these licensed pilot but the intake was not significant though Malindo, Firefly, MASwings and AirAsia still employ at a small number. 

"Some pilots have also gone to work overseas like Indonesia, and a few have become flying instructors at flying schools. Some had also converted the licence to helicopter where we still see a shortage. 

"However, to convert from fixed wings to helicopter is a bit difficult as it is actually much easier to fly airplanes compared with helicopter," said Azharuddin.
Student intake at the flying schools had also reduced as requested by the DCA, besides the less demand due to lack of job opportunities. This has also driven the schools to look at the China market for students as the demand for pilots in that country is still very high. – Bernama

P/S : Oopss ~


NST : 03.10.2013

KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysia was reelected to the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO) council for the 2013-2016 term during its assembly on Monday in Montreal.

Acting Transport Minister Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Hussein said this was a big recognition for the country's civil aviation industry.

"By getting reelected to the council, the country is that much closer to earning a place in the United Nation's Security Council," he said yesterday.

Hishammuddin said the achievement proved that the ministry and the Department of Civil Aviation were able to regulate the aviation industry in a professional and safe manner.

"Our ability to administer the aviation industry efficiently is further proven by the recognition given by the United States Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) through the Bilateral Aviation Safety Agreement."

Malaysia ws the first country in Asia and only the fifth in the world to sign the security aviation agreement with the FAA, Hishammuddin added.

"Our reelection to the council also proves that Malaysia is one of the most important in the region, as far as aviation is concerned.

"This is also a recognition of the country's sophisticated airports. Malaysia has six international and 16 domestic airports.

"In total, there are 87 runways operating nationwide."

Hishammuddin said Malaysia's reelection to the council was also due in part to the professionalism and abilities shown by Malaysia Airlines (MAS) and AirAsia.

"MAS flies to 46 international destinations and is one of six airline companies in the world to be given a five-star award by Sky Traxx International.

"AirAsia is recognised as the No. 1 low-cost airline in Asia. It was named the best low-cost airline in the world from 2009 to 2012."

There are 191 member states of ICAO, with Malaysia joining the ranks in 1958.

There are three categories where a member country is elected to become a part of the council and Malaysia falls under the third category, which comprises a state with a destination enabling passengers to travel across the globe.

The ICAO is a specialised agency of the United Nations and its council is the body that adopts standards and recommended practices.

Till then, see ya~