AirAsia to enlarge Indonesian and Philippines operations – Tony Fernandes

AirAsia to enlarge Indonesian and Philippines operations - Tony Fernandes

SINGAPORE: Low-cost airline AirAsia plans to enlarge its Indonesian and Philippines operations beyond their pre-pandemic levels by the first quarter of next year, riding on better tourism and connectivity prospects.

Capital A Bhd chief executive officer Tan Sri Tony Fernandes said the huge tourism potential and economic performances are among the drivers for AirAsia’s growth in both countries over the next five years.

Although the airline has a positive outlook for Indonesia and the Philippines, it will not cut its fleet operations in Malaysia and Thailand.

“We need the aircraft in Malaysia and Thailand; it is just that Indonesia and the Philippines are really growing very well and we want to grow them to a bigger size,” he said at an AirAsia event in Changi’s Terminal 4 to celebrate the resumption of operations.

AirAsia has a current fleet size of 205 and it would like to increase that to 300 planes over the next five years. It will begin to take delivery of 362 Airbus 321neo it has ordered starting 2024.

On its cargo operations, he said AirAsia’s logistic-arm Teleport will contribute significantly to the group’s growth in the next five years with 50 freighters in service.

The group is resuming their order for four Airbus 321 full freighters with the first delivery expected in December 2022 which they had put on hold earlier due to the pandemic.

“There is a real opportunity here, similar to what we did for passenger services. We basically opened up a whole new market — 60 per cent of our routes today are new.

“We can do exactly the same for logistics and we think cargo is going to be a very large part of our life in Changi and also around our network,” he said. – Bernama