Domestic airfare ceiling soon, says Transport Minister Loke

Mavcom is in final stages of finalising a study on a suitable mechanism

By P PREM KUMAR & DASHVEENJIT KAUR / Pic By TMR

The Malaysian Aviation Commission (Mavcom) is finalising a mechanism to control airfares of domestic flights, especially during festive periods.

Transport Minister Anthony Loke (picture) said the study on the ceiling price for domestic airfares is expected to be completed by the end of the month.

He told the Dewan Rakyat yesterday that a pricing scheme will then be determined by Mavcom.

Loke was responding to MP Alice Lau Kiong Yieng (Pakatan Harapan-Lanang), who queried if ceiling price for airfare can be implemented, apart from outlining other measures that would be taken by the ministry to prevent profiteering by airlines.

“Mavcom is now in the final stages of finalising the study on a suitable mechanism to control domestic air-fares without including other charges.

“There is no use for us to set a ceiling rate during festive seasons when we let prices on ordinary days spiral out of control.

“The initial idea may have been to implement a ceiling price, however, we have not made a final decision, as there are implications to consider,” Loke said.

He said after the comprehensive study by Mavcom, a policy decision will be made so that no negative impact will be passed to the people.

“Suggestions on other applicable measures to lower the price of a flight ticket during the festive season will be finalised together with a study on domestic airline ticket prices,” he added.

On the price of MASwings’ (Sdn Bhd) domestic air tickets in Sarawak, Loke said the ceiling would be implemented by fixing the air ticket price without imposing other charges on the operator, such as the fuel surcharge.

“The ceiling will be reviewed more frequently and would be set by mutual agreement between the Ministry of Transport, Mavcom and MASwings according to current requirements.

“East Malaysia lawmakers will also be engaged by the ministry to gain their input before any policy decision is made on the matter,” the minister said.