KUALA LUMPUR: Khazanah Nasional Bhd intends to recover all of its RM6bil investment into Malaysia Airlines (MAS), dismissing perception that the money pumped into the airline was a bailout.
Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak said Khazanah would be injecting the money to make MAS a viable organisation.
“This is not a bailout but an investment.
“Khazanah intends to recover every single sen of the RM6bil and more,” he said after chairing the monthly Umno supreme council meeting yesterday.
While recovering the investment might take some time, Najib said he was confident that MAS’ positive turnaround could be reached in three years as planned.
Khazanah has unveiled a 12-point plan to enable MAS achieve sustained profitability within three years of de-listing, by the end of 2017.
The Prime Minister said MAS’ turnaround plan was based on several principles, which included it continuing to be the national carrier that Malaysians could all be proud of.
“We also maintain that MAS must be an airline that has commercial viability and that all decisions must have commercial considerations.
“One important principle is that the right-sizing exercise must be done in the most humane and compassionate manner.
“The company should assist in finding alternative jobs, provide up-skilling opportunities, apart from offering a voluntary separation scheme to the staff,” said Najib.
The exercise is expected to see a reduction of some 6,000 or 30% of the approximately 20,000 current staff.
“The plan is viable, InsyaAllah. Khazanah has the experience. It has helped revive UEM (Group),” he added.
On the appointment of a new chief executive officer, the Prime Minister said it would be someone with a proven track record.
“If it is a foreigner, it will be temporary. A local will then be designated to take over later,” he added.