PETALING JAYA: The Transport Ministry (MoT) does not prohibit Malaysia Airports Holdings Bhd (MAHB) from forming joint ventures (JVs) with private entities to carry out airport expansion projects.
However, MAHB had chosen to postpone the implementation of the project until it had sufficient cash flow to cover its expenses, said Transport Minister Datuk Seri Dr Wee Ka Siong.
He noted that currently MAHB has to bear the operating costs for all 39 airports under its network nationwide, which comes up to RM140mil per month.
“When the situation returns to normal, it will not be a problem to carry out the airport expansion project, especially at the Penang International Airport.
“We still have the proposal, but if it were to be implemented at this time, it would pose a financial constraint for MAHB,” he said when winding up the debate on the Supply Bill 2022 at the policy level in the Dewan Rakyat yesterday.
On the “takeover” of the Sultan Abdul Aziz Shah Airport (Subang Airport), Bernama reported that Wee said the government had no plans to approve the takeover or sale of any part of the Subang Airport to any private business entities.
He said the rights and operation of the Subang Airport remained as stipulated under the lease agreement with MAHB, where MAHB would operate, manage and maintain the airport, including occupying, using and controlling the airport until 2034 (operating agreement) and 2067 (lease agreement).
“MAHB is responsible for developing Subang Airport as an international aerospace hub as decided by the Cabinet on March 2, 2005,” he said.
Meanwhile, no approval has been given on the construction of an aerodrome for the Kulim International Airport (KXP) construction project to date, as provided under the Civil Aviation (Aerodrome Operation) Regulations 2016.
Wee said the final approval on the proposed construction of the KXP will only be considered when the National Airport Strategic Plan study is completed.
He also emphasised the need to comply with all conditions set by other government agencies as stated in technical reports such as the Environmental Impact Assessment Report, Social Impact Assessment Report and Traffic Impact Assessment Report.
“This is to ensure that the proposed airport construction is truly viable, sustainable and meets the technical requirements set by the Civil Aviation Authority of Malaysia and the Malaysian Aviation Commission,” he said.
So far, the National Physical Planning Council had only given its approval in principle on the KXP project following its meeting on Oct 27, 2020.
“The approval in principle is subject to the application for consideration of the MoT and other government agencies,” he said.