Premier: State-owned boutique airline won’t be profit motivated

Abang Johari speaking during the DUBS Kuching branch charity dinner. Screenshot taken from an Ukas livestream on Facebook.

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By Christopher Lidom and Chris Bishop

KUCHING, Nov 27: Sarawak’s boutique airline will not be profit motivated, but act to facilitate bringing investors and tourists to the State, says Premier Datuk Patinggi Tan Sri Abang Johari Tun Openg.

Abang Johari said because the airline company is owned by the Sarawak government, its set up will be based on its own unique model without following either Malaysia Airlines or AirAsia.

“Those airlines are profit-based, but not Sarawak’s boutique airline. As long as we breakeven,” he said during the Chamber of Sarawak Bumiputera Entrepreneurs (DUBS) Kuching charity dinner held at Borneo Convention Centre Kuching (BCCK) which was streamed live via Sarawak Public Communications Unit’s (Ukas) Facebook page, today.

Abang Johari pointed out that with Sarawak as a medical tourism destination, the boutique airlines will help to bring those who require these services, such as from Hong Kong, Bali, Singapore, Bangkok, Japan, and even India, which are within a 6-hour flight to reach Sarawak.

“There are people who questioned me for creating the airline, but for me, it is the necessary infrastructure that we should build, like a road.

“For roads, you do not talk about the tangible return for building it, but you talk about the intangible benefit that you get because of the access.

“The same applies for the boutique airline company,” he added. — DayakDaily