Malaysia Airports Holdings Berhad MD Tan Sri Bashir Ahmad, speaking at the CAPA Australia Pacific Aviation Summit, stated (09-Aug-2013) that for airports, “if the market is big enough and the yields are big enough, you don’t have to attract airlines, they will come.”
MAHB MD: If market and yields are big enough, airlines will come
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Interjet moves forward in strengthening its transborder position. Politics spurs market uncertainty
Mexico’s third largest airline, Interjet, recorded a surge in international passengers during 2016, reflecting the company’s desire to capitalise on a loosened bilateral agreement between the US and Mexico that eliminated restrictions on certain routes between the two countries. Interjet added several new routes to the US in 2016, upping competition with its Mexican rivals and the US airlines.
Based on Interjet’s aircraft delivery schedule and forward looking data, the airline’s capacity is set to grow at a healthy pace in 2017 as it absorbs new route launches from 2016 and expands its fleet. The airline logged 18.3% capacity growth in 2016.
Interjet is undertaking a significant US expansion as changing political tides are creating uncertainty about future travel patterns between Mexico and the US. Interjet asserts that business travel demand on its largest international route – Mexico City to New York JFK – remains robust, and the airline is expanding frequencies on the route.
But Mexico-US relations remain fragile in the light of uneasiness about changing trade pacts, and the heightened rhetoric over construction of a border wall between the two countries that was a hallmark of (now) President’s Trump campaign.
Malaysia’s AirAsia: resuming domestic expansion and eyeing MASwings routes
AirAsia is resuming domestic expansion in the Malaysian market with a focus on connecting more dots within its network of 15 domestic destinations. The LCC is launching or resuming three domestic routes from Johor Bahru in late Apr-2017 and has lodged applications for four more new domestic point-to-point routes.
By the end of 2017 AirAsia is also aiming to take over a few domestic routes within east Malaysia that are now exclusively operated by the Malaysia Airlines Group turboprop subsidiary MASwings. The routes are part of the Malaysian government’s subsidised rural air services (RAS) programme, but are potentially big enough to support larger aircraft on a commercial basis. The Malaysia Airlines Group is preparing to reduce its ATR 72 turboprop fleet further following anticipated changes to the RAS programme, which is coming up for renewal this year.
AirAsia is the leading domestic airline in Malaysia and has 50% of its total seat capacity allocated to the domestic market. However, AirAsia’s domestic capacity has been flat the last three years as it has focused entirely on international expansion.