More flights, more connections; China and Malaysia

Now everyone can fly…. into Malaysia more. I think this can be an extension to what AirAsia has been saying to all its passengers since the very beginning. I must admit, AirAsia is not my first choice. Malaysia Airlines is. This is especially if I am flying with my family. When I am flying alone, the cheaper the better. 🙂  In fact these are the only two airlines that I fly with, unless of course there are no other choices, then I will open myself to others. Yes, I have flown with many other low cost as well as full-service airlines. However, it’s just like Japanese would prefer JAL, Hong Kongers would prefer Cathay and Thais would prefer Thai Airways, right. Coming back to AirAsia. A Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) has been signed with Chinese partners (Everbright Group and Henan Government Working Group) to establish a low-cost carrier (LCC) in China. Full article in NST here. Who is Everbright? Here’s some reading. Everbright in Wiki. It was ranked 313 in Fortune Global 500 in 2016. In brief, it’s HUGE. Second question, where is Henan. Everyone knows Beijing, Shanghai and even Shenzhen but Henan…?  Here’s what Wiki says. By the way, in terms of GDP contribution, it is ranked 5th and as at 2013 had a population of 94 million. 3 times that of Malaysia. 🙂  So, I guess they are good partners to have even if it’s always debatable as to who would have been better partners.

The MOU incorporates a joint venture to be known as AirAsia (China) and the base of this new business would be in Zhengzhou, the capital of Henan province. AirAsia China will also invest in aviation infrastructure, including a dedicated LCC terminal at Zhengzhou airport and an aviation academy to train pilots, crew and engineers, as well as maintenance, repair and overhaul (MRO) facilities to service aircraft. The MOU was exchanged between AirAsia Group CEO Tony Fernandes, Everbright Financial Investment Holding Executive Director and President Wang Weifeng and Henan Airport Group General Manager Li Weidong at China World Hotel here today. Full article in NST here. Fernandes shared, “We chose Zhengzhou as our base due to its strategic location and importance as a logistics hub. As China’s gateway to Europe, Zhengzhou sits at the centre of a vast rail, highway and air transport network that forms the linchpin of China’s development plans for its central and western regions. With President Xi Jinping’s vision for One Belt, One Road, Zhengzhou is set to become even more important, not least as the heart of low-cost air travel in North Asia.”

My personal take from this deal is that there are going to be even more flights from China into Malaysia. This has to be good. I know, this airline will fly to many other destinations and not just Malaysia but this is going to be part of AirAsia and as of today, AirAsia is still very strong within Asia or at least within ASEAN. The connections will widen and hopefully Henan will just be the first base. I think many of China’s own low-cost airlines would ‘fight’ to keep AirAsia (China) at bay but this is the reason why the right partners would help tremendously. Looking forward to reading more of this joint venture. Especially the launching date and other details such as the number of aircrafts, the destinations and even the frequencies. At this moment, it’s just an MOU. Yes, of course when more people come, it would help the property market too. Recently, Zhengzhou in Henan restricted property purchase because it was too hot.. Read here.  Keep following yeah.

written on 14 May 2017

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