Copyright © 2019 News in Flight | All Rights Reserved
Malaysia’s national airline is seeking steep discounts from lessors and creditors to prevent liquidation.
Khazanah Nasional Bhd, the owner of national carrier is negotiating with lessors and creditors to accept its restructuring plan as it had been operating at loss since 2014.
The airline requires nearly $5bn to continue operations until 2025.
Last week, Khazanah, said that it intends to stop funding the carrier and would consider finance ‘Firefly’ to expand its operations as alternate airline to Malaysian Airlines if it fails to restructure.
Firefly, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Malaysia Aviation Group (MAG), now operates mainly within Malaysia with a fleet of 12 twin turboprops, said to launch its jet operations in the first quarter of 2021 (1Q21), serving the domestic, Asean and Asia-Pacific markets out of Penang International Airport.
However, Izham Ismail, Malaysia Airlines and group CEO of parent Malaysia Aviation Group (MAG), said “The negotiations are still ongoing and taking longer than the planned timeline, but we are gaining encouraging traction from the lessors and creditors thus far.”.. and added “Do you see me throwing in the towel yet? Together with the senior leadership team, we are here still fighting for the company’s survival.”
In the meantime, “Khazanah is ready to stop channeling funds towards Malaysia Airlines and will finance Firefly to expand its operations. If we succeed, Firefly has the potential to become Malaysia’s national carrier,” Shahril, CEO of Khazanah said in an interview with Bahrain News.
The news comes as Malaysian Airlines announced plans to offer employees the opportunity to upskill or reskill, through its recently introduced MH EDGILE program so that they can find jobs in other sectors.
The program is open to more than 2,000 employees, mainly pilot, cabin crew and other front-line workers who are affected due to the current reduced network and operational capacity.