Malaysian Air Cargo Sector Sees Solid Growth
MAVCOM Reports Consumer Complaints Drop by 59.1% in 1H21
KUALA LUMPUR, 25 OCTOBER 2021 – The Malaysian Aviation Commission (MAVCOM or the Commission) today released both its Air Traffic Rights (ATR) Report for the period spanning 1 July to 30 September 2021 and its tenth bi-annual Consumer Report for the first half of 2021 (1H21).
The ATR Report outlines the Commission’s ATR allocations for the Malaysian civil aviation sector, while the latter provides an overview on consumer complaints lodged with the Commission against airlines and airports as well as highlights MAVCOM’s consumer-related initiatives.
Key Highlights from Air Traffic Rights (ATR) Report
The Commission continues to play its role as an economic regulator for the civil aviation industry with the approval of 100 per cent of 21 ATR applications received in the third quarter of 2021. The 21 applications represent a 110 per cent increase in application rates as compared to the second quarter of 2021.
The Commission approved 14 ATRs for international destinations and 7 ATRs for domestic routes. MyJet Xpress Sdn. Bhd. and World Cargo Airline Sdn. Bhd. were awarded the highest number of approvals with 5 ATRs each, followed by AirAsia X Berhad and MAB Kargo Sdn. Bhd. with 4 ATR and 3 ATR approvals respectively, as well as 2 ATR approvals each for Malaysia Airlines Berhad and AirAsia Group Berhad.
Of the 21 ATR applications, 18 applications were from the cargo sector signalling continued healthy growth within the sector. The Commission had previously reported an expected expansion between 26.5 per cent year-on-year (YoY) and 28.2 per cent YoY in Malaysia’s air cargo traffic for 2021.
In addition to the ATR approvals, the Commission is continuing to support industry players in their recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic by extending its suspension of the evaluation of domestic ATR applications, which has been in place since October 2020 until further notice.
Key highlights from Consumer Report 1H21
In its Consumer Report, the Commission revealed that a total of 157 complaints were submitted to MAVCOM, which translated to a 59.1 per cent reduction in filed complaints compared to the same period last year. Of the 157 complaints, 98.1 per cent were complaints regarding airlines, while 1.9 per cent of complaints were related to airports.
Complaints against AirAsia represented 41.4 per cent of the total complaints filed with the Commission, followed by Malaysia Airlines at 28.7 per cent and Malindo Air at 12.1 per cent. All airlines, except Firefly Airlines, observed a drop in the number of complaints filed with MAVCOM, corresponding with a decrease in the number of passengers carried.
MAVCOM noted that 60.1 per cent of the complaints resulted in airlines reversing their initial decisions by providing resolutions that are more equitable or satisfactory to the consumers, reflecting a 2.3 percentage point increase compared to the corresponding period in 2020.
In line with their dedication to protect aviation consumer rights, MAVCOM successfully resolved 97.5 per cent of the complaints received within the six-month period, while 82 of the complaints were non actionable due to incomplete documentation by consumers, complaints falling beyond the scope of the Malaysian Aviation Consumer Protection Code 2016 (MACPC) or complaints being filed over a year from the date of the incident. Resolved complaints included those related to refunds, frequent flyer programmes and flight cancellations.
At the same time, a total of 675 COVID-19 related refund requests were submitted to MAVCOM in 1H21.
In addition to resolving consumer complaints and requests, MAVCOM looks to improve education on air travel rights and provide further improvements to increase consumer convenience, as well as the implementation of the Airports Quality of Service (QoS) Framework.
Datuk Seri Hj. Saripuddin Hj. Kasim, Executive Chairman of MAVCOM said, “We are pleased to be able to resolve 97.5 per cent of complaints and approve all ATRs requested, which indicates our continued dedication to both consumers and industry players alike. The growth of the cargo sector has certainly been a silver lining for the aviation industry during this pandemic. With the ballooning demand for ecommerce coupled with reduced belly space cargo capacity thrusting the cargo sector globally forward, we will continue to support local players to take advantage of the prospects ahead.”
Datuk Seri Hj. Saripuddin added, “As air travel resumes, the Commission looks forward to further improving its efforts in protecting the rights of consumers and supporting aviation industry players in their post-pandemic recovery.”