MAG says no Malaysia Airlines, AirAsia merger plan

Malaysia Aviation Group chief executive officer Capt Izham Ismail said a merger between Malaysia Airlines Bhd and AirAsia was off the table.

KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysia Aviation Group (MAG), the parent company of Malaysia Airlines Bhd, has put an end to the rumours surrounding the possible merger between the airline and low cost carrier AirAsia Group Bhd.

Group chief executive officer Capt Izham Ismail gave an unequivocal "No", saying that a merger with AirAsia is off the table.

“Actually, we never had that conversation. It’s actually the media that put words in our mouth.

“Let everybody sort out their own problems. This is not the best time to do mergers and acquisitions.

“Personally speaking, we’ve been able to restructure our balance sheet. Why would we throw ourselves to another organisation who is trying to survive?” he said, adding that it will take a big toll on MAG.

Izham said he was hopeful that AirAsia will be able to come out from the pandemic successfully as it is one of the country’s economic contributors.

“Looking at it in the bigger picture, I believe strongly that as a nation, Malaysia needs AirAsia to be successful.

“In the market place there are two distinct products, premium and low cost, ” he said.

In April last year, International Trade and Industry Minister Datuk Seri Mohamed Azmin Ali said merging Malaysia Airlines and AirAsia Group was one of the options to save them as Covid-19 continued to affect the industry.

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