KUDAT: The Federal Government is still studying carefully MASwings’ application to start flying to new destinations within the BIMP-EAGA, namely from Kota Kinabalu to Balikpapan and from Kuching to Balikpapan in Kalimantan, Indonesia.
Deputy Transport Minister Datuk Abdul Rahim Bakri said the proposal needed to be studied in detail, including taking into account the preparedness of MASwings and its existing number of aircraft.
This is to ensure that MASwings’ commitment to rural air services, which is a contractual service through the Federal Government for the people of Sabah and Sarawak, cannot be compromised as this would raise the ire of the Sabah and Sarawak people, he told Bernama after a gathering at Kampung Tanjung Kapor, near here, yesterday.
Nevertheless, Abdul Rahim said the Transport Ministry remained committed to the BIMP-EAGA member countries’ plans to enhance air connectivity in the region.
BIMP-EAGA or the Brunei-Indonesia-Malaysia-Philippines-East Asia Growth Area is a regional economic integration initiative.
Meanwhile, Abdul Rahim said Malaysia is on the right track for continued economic growth as it has attracted commerce that will bring prosperity to the people and country.
He said as such, the people should maintain the peace and stability by avoiding disruptive politics.
“A country in turmoil will be shunned by visitors and ultimately have implication on the economy and people,” he said after officiating a mass circumcision ceremony at Kampung Tanjong Kapor, near here yesterday.
Rahim who is also Member of Parliament for Kudat, urged the people to be involved in tourism activities, including the homestay programme.
“Since Kudat has become a popular tourist destination, the people should seize the opportunity by exploiting the natural beauty for economic gain,” he said.-Bernama