Malaysia Airlines to expand reach in China
BEIJING: Malaysia Airlines will serve eight new destinations and 11 new routes with 35 additional frequencies between Malaysia and China beginning in early 2017.
Malaysia Airlines CEO Peter Bellew said Malaysia Airlines plans to triple its Chinese business over the next five years.
“I see potential for direct flights to 20 Chinese cities from Kuala Lumpur, Penang, Kota Kinabalu and Kuching by 2019. We have huge confidence in China. The improved connectivity will foster deeper business links between the two countries. Malaysians relish the business opportunities and tourism experience in China.
“The Chinese tourist market to Malaysia is growing rapidly due to the shared food, language and cultural connections. In addition to this initial growth, we will promote tourism in Malaysia and China through seasonal or adhoc services to key leisure markets such as Langkawi, Kuching and Kota Kinabalu.
“Six of our new Chinese cities have never been served directly by a Malaysian airline,” he said in a statement.
Malaysia Airlines will be flying from Kuala Lumpur to Haikou, Nanjing, Fuzhou, Wuhan, Chengdu, Chongqing in the first half of 2017. It will also launch flights from Kota Kinabalu to Tianjin and from Penang to Shenzhen and Shanghai.
The airline will add a second daily flight between Kuala Lumpur and Shanghai subject to slots in April 2017. This follows the airline’s recent announcement on the service upgrade to its morning Kuala Lumpur-Hong Kong sector from the Boeing 737 to the Airbus 330.
Separately, MAB Kargo is strengthening its footprint in the east of China with the launch of new freighter service to Guangzhou from Kuala Lumpur.
MAB Kargo will operate twice weekly A330 freighter services to Guangzhou starting tomorrow. These services make a new stop at Guangzhou every Tuesday and Thursday. This new route will offer 60 tonnes of cargo capacity per flight.
The twice weekly service is introduced to tap the increasing cargo movements between Guangzhou Baiyun International Airport and Kuala Lumpur International Airport.
Guangzhou is recognised as the third busiest airport in China in terms of cargo traffic as well as key Asia-Pacific hub for major cargo airlines.
The key exports carried by MAB Kargo will include perishables cargo, predominantly seafood as well as general cargo.