Hard for Malaysia Airlines-AirAsia merger to work, says Khazanah

Khazanah Nasional says the different business models and work cultures of Malaysia Airlines and AirAsia make a merger an unlikely option.

KUALA LUMPUR: Khazanah Nasional Bhd said a merger between Malaysia Airlines Bhd (MAB) and low-cost airline AirAsia would be difficult to carry out.

Khazanah managing director Shahril Ridza Ridzuan said the different business models and work cultures of the two entities would make a merger an unlikely option.

“Malaysia requires both low-cost operators as well as a higher-value operator like Malaysia Airlines to co-exist, because you need to address multiple segments of the market.

“So, I think for the long-term strategy of Malaysia, (it is) important to provide enough choice, not only for Malaysians to fly, but for international travellers to come to the country,” he said on TV3’s Money Matters programme yesterday.

Khazanah Nasional fully owns MAB.

Shahril had reportedly said earlier that the sovereign wealth fund was waiting for the Malaysia Airlines management to come up with a recovery plan.