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The government’s decision to dissolve the Malaysian Aviation Commission (Mavcom) and transfer some of its functions to the Civil Aviation Authority of Malaysia (CAAM) has received mixed reactions from regional aviation experts. NST file pix

KUALA LUMPUR: The government’s decision to dissolve the Malaysian Aviation Commission (Mavcom) and transfer some of its functions to the Civil Aviation Authority of Malaysia (CAAM) has received mixed reactions from regional aviation experts.

Singapore-based independent analyst and consultant Brendan Sobie of Sobie Aviation said Mavcom had played an important role since its establishment, which needs to be fully maintained.

“The Malaysian aviation industry is at a critical juncture, given the recent United States Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) downgrade, the non-profitability of local airlines, pending applications for new airlines, Khazanah Nasional Bhd’s aspiration to sell Malaysia Airlines and the review of airport policy,” he told the New Straits Times yesterday.

He said the government needed to ensure all changes, including the Mavcom-CAAM integration, were properly executed without negatively impacting stakeholders.

“However, it is too early to tell whether Mavcom’s dissolution will be good or bad for Malaysia and its aviation industry.”

Asian aviation consultancy firm Aer Mobi chief executive officer Michael Walsh said the merger made sense from a shared resource and efficiency point of view.

“It needs to be handled with decorum. Mavcom’s statement on the announcement indicates their disappointment,” he said.

Walsh said further recommendation to the Transport Ministry, the Prime Minister’s Office and Khazanah was required to bring in professional and international aviation experts via a public request for proposal, allowing them to be embedded into the two entities as soon as possible.

“The mandate can be implemented within a 12-to-18-month period to address issues and put the combined entity on a path to sustainability, economically speaking, serving the local and regional airspace community.”

He said staff morale would be low in both agencies and the government needed to address the matter, along with other pending industry issues next year.

He said the new regulator needed to not just tackle the recent downgrade by FAA, but also cope with all the new regulations.

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