KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysia Airports Holdings Bhd’s (MAHB) passenger movements at its domestic airports grew 8.7 per cent to a record of 96.6 million passengers in 2017, surpassing the 90 million mark for the first time.
In a filing to Bursa Malaysia today, MAHB said the passenger traffic was mainly driven by the international sector, which rose 14.6 per cent to 49.5 million passengers in 2017 over 2016.
“Domestic traffic on the other hand recorded 47.1 million passenger movements, an increase of 3.1 per cent over the same period in 2016. The Kuala Lumpur International Airport (KLIA) recorded 58.6 million passengers in 2017, a double-digit growth of 11.4 per cent over 2016.
“KLIA handled 28.3 million passengers, 11 per cent higher than in 2016 while klia2 handled 30.3 million passengers, a growth of 11.8 per cent over 2016. KLIA and Kota Kinabalu were among the airports that registered a double-digit growth in passenger movements,” it said.
MAHB said other airports that also registered positive growth were Penang, Kuching, Langkawi, Kota Bharu, Melaka, Tawau and Bintulu, while overall aircraft movements for airports in Malaysia increased by 4.5 per cent in 2017.
It said the international movements increased by 11 per cent while domestic sector increased by 0.7 per cent, with the overall average load factor for 2017 at 76 per cent, the highest since 2012.
Despite the high increase in the international aircraft movements, MAHB said average load factor for the international sector was an all-time high of 77 per cent, while overall cargo movements increased by 7.9 per cent in 2017 to 955,936 tonnes, the first positive growth since 2014.
Meanwhile, MAHB said the Istanbul Sabiha Gokcen Airport’s (SGIA) total passengers surpassed the 30 million mark for the first time in 2017, registering 31.3 million passengers, an increase of 5.7 per cent over 2016.
“International passengers increased by 8.4 per cent, while domestic passengers increased by 4.5 per cent. Istanbul SGIA’s passenger traffic picked up momentum after February 2017,” it added.
Based on prevailing economic conditions and the additional airlines seat capacity offered, MAHB said Malaysia passenger traffic in 2018 is expected to register 103.7 million passengers over 96.6 million recorded in 2017.
“The international and domestic passenger traffic is expected to register 53.9 million and 49.8 million movements, respectively. It is expected that fuel cost (single largest airline cost at 20-40 per cent) will remain close to current prices.
“Malaysia would continue to benefit from visa relaxation for Chinese and Indian tourists. The 2018 traffic numbers are expected to be mainly contributed by China, India and Southeast Asia sectors which currently make up 75 per cent of the international traffic,” it said.
For the Istanbul SGIA, it said this year the airport is expected to register 34 million passenger movements with 12 million international and 22 million domestic movements.
“While the Turkish economic growth is expected to record a stable 4.0 per cent growth, passenger growth is expected to remain moderate resulting from runway capacity constraints,” it added. – Bernama