MALINDO AIR’S TAX ARREARS WILL BE PAID, SAYS LIOW
Transport minister confident that airline can pay up
THE transport minister yesterday acknowledged that Malindo Air owes airport tax arrears amounting to RM70 million.
Datuk Seri Liow Tiong Lai, however, is confident that the airline would be able to settle the arrears.
“Malindo Air, AirAsia and Malaysia Airlines (MAS) have arrears, but they have to settle them because the tax is for the government,” he said after the opening of Blossom Arts Festival 2017 at Wisma MCA here yesterday.
Liow was responding to a statement by Special Affairs Department (Jasa) director-general Datuk Dr Mohd Puad Zarkashi, who urged Malaysia Airports Holdings Bhd (MAHB) to clarify whether Malindo Air had paid its passenger service charge (PSC) this year.
MAHB, in a statement yesterday, said it was working with its airline partners to resolve the outstanding PSC payments.
“MAHB values the relationship it has with all airline partners equally. We are constantly looking at ways to improve and enhance the billing and payment processes.”
The airport operator yesterday launched its “Online Billing Portal”, which is aimed at benefiting nearly 15,000 clients, vendors and business partners, including airlines.
“With this portal in place, the finance process for all our partners will be more efficient and transparent. Business partners will be provided with a unique ID that will allow them to access the portal and view information, such as billing and payment dates.”
PSC is a government regulated charge payable to MAHB and collected by airlines in the ticket price.
PSC is only payable when passengers board their aircraft and is used to maintain and upgrade facilities and services at the airport.
Liow said the airport tax collection mechanism was not flawed.
“The existing airport tax collection mechanism works well. It just that we need to update it from time to time.”
When asked how much time would be given to the airlines to settle their arrears, Liow said the usual practice was six months.
“This is a business decision. However, they cannot let the arrears be overdue for a longer period. Normally, every six months, they have to clear all their debts.”
Earlier, Puad urged the Transport Ministry to take action against Malindo.
He also questioned whether the airline was being given special treatment.
Transport Minister Datuk Seri Liow Tiong Lai talking with pupils at the Blossom Arts Festival 2017 at Wisma MCA, Kuala Lumpur, yesterday.