LUMUT: Malaysia Airports Holdings Berhad (MAHB) is studying the details of various aspects, including the cost, to extend the runway at Pangkor airport so that it can resume operations.
Its chairman, Zambry Abd Kadir, said the extension of the runway would be based on the type of aircraft expected to use the facility.
“If the aircraft used is the ATR 72 that can accommodate of up to 70 passengers, then we need to extend the runway in Pangkor,” he told reporters after officiating the “Ceria Kembali ke Sekolah #MYAirportCARES” programme, in collaboration with the Pangkor state constituency service centre, at the 2G Phase Community Hall here today.
Pangkor airport had been in operation since 1993 with a 732m-long runway. Flight operations stopped in February 2014.
It was scheduled to resume operations in October last year but this was postponed as it was still waiting for runway safety and technical inspections.
Asked about preparations in relation to the current Covid-19 situation, Zambry, who is also Pangkor assemblyman, said MAHB was always ready, especially since airports are the entry points to the country.
“We will engage in continuous discussion with the National Security Council so that the airports are always properly controlled to ensure any possible Covid-19 infection can be avoided,” he said.
Meanwhile, MAHB group chief executive Mohd Shukrie Mohd Salleh said that currently total passenger traffic through airports is 30-40% of what it used to be before the Covid-19 pandemic.
He said this may decrease 10-15% if travel restrictions are implemented again.
He also said the public need not worry about being at airports to catch flights as MAHB was taking all preventive measures against the spread of Covid-19.
At today’s event, 925 underprivileged students from several areas in the Lumut parliamentary constituency received school supplies costing a total of RM125,000.