Low cost carrier AirAsia and Malaysia Airports Holdings Berhad (MAHB) continue to lock horns as MAHB Managing Director Badlisham Ghazali said the airline has to relocate its operations from Kota Kinabalu International Airport’s Terminal 2 to Terminal 1.
Badlisham explained this by saying there is no more move for expansion at KKIA T2.
He today said at the official opening of the airport’s Terminal 1:
It (Terminal 2) is a ‘land-locked’ area, which means there is no more space to expand the terminal, left or right.
According to him, KKIA Terminal 2 will be converted to cargo operations and general aviation.
A lot of people want to use that space (Terminal 2) not only for cargo operations but also for private planes that need parking facilities. There is only nine aircraft parking bays at Terminal 2 while here (Terminal 1) there are 25.
In addition, he said, Terminal 1 will be boosted by 16 more parking spaces for planes.
Badlisham also had a message for the Malaysian Transport Ministry:
So, we hope the Transport Ministry will issue a firm instruction for all airlines to relocate and use the facilities provided at Terminal 1.
Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak also said that traffic at KKIA T2 was congested due to the number of guests it has to receive.
A “Master Plan” for KKIA Expansion
MAHB’s Managing Director also said there’s a “master plan” when it comes to expanding Kota Kinabalu International, which will allow the airport to accept 16 million visitors every year. Right now, the airport has a capacity of 9 million passengers per year.
About this, Badlisham said:
This has been in discussion with the Sabah state government for many years and our stand is that it is better to have an integrated terminal for both full service and low cost carriers. It is about connectivity and will draw even more passengers come into a hub like Sabah.