KUALA LUMPUR: AirAsia Group Bhd’s CEO Tan Sri Tony Fernandes has floated the idea for Asean governments to explore reopening their borders.
“I hope that we can take the next step now in travel to relook at travel restrictions that we have at the moment.
“I think we’ve had a very successful launch (for) domestic flights, ” Fernandes said on the sidelines of the launch of AirAsia Shop yesterday.
“In my mind, we have not really got to the international green lane. If you look at Thailand and Malaysia which (nowadays) has less than ten cases a day, why don’t we have a green lane, ” he added.
Fernandes said he hoped the government could take small, careful and incremental steps to start reopening the borders.
“In reality, I think everyone prefers for their borders to be closed now and no one wants to open up, but I’m saying that we can take that step.
“We have to be brave to take one step forward with all the precautions for sure. Let us look at it rationally and ask if it’s a big risk to fly to Thailand and (vice versa). Right now, I don’t think so, ” he said.
“Since there is a good testing regime in place now I hope that higher risk areas can be opened. Travel has been really put on the backburner but now is a good opportunity to slowly and carefully relook at opening our borders without too much risk, ” he said.
Fernandes said that AirAsia is expecting that there will be no international travel for the rest of the year and that it is prepared for this.
“I hope we can have some green lanes moving forward and we can always stop if it doesn’t work (cases rise), ” he added.
“I hope it doesn’t last till December (closed borders), but we are prepared for this. I hope there won’t be (more downsizing), but there are a lot of factors to think of and we will have to wait and see, ” he said.
Fernandes yesterday launched AirAsia Shop to further expand the company to be a one-stop digital lifestyle platform.
AirAsia Shop – airasia.com/shop – enables people to purchase authentic duty-free products which will be conveniently delivered to their doorstep within the next working day with the support of AirAsia’s logistics arm, Teleport.
AirAsia in its statement said AirAsia Shop carried top brands from around the world, ranging from beauty, fragrance, liquor, gadgets, health and wellness, travel accessories as well as AirAsia merchandise.
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