Tuesday May 19, 2009
By JACK WONG and R.S.N. MURALI
HULU TERENGGANU: Singapore's low-cost carrier Tiger Airways is planning to fly direct from the city-state to Kuala Terengganu's Sultan Mahmud Airport.
The airline is now negotiating the flight frequencies with the Department of Civil Aviation here and Malaysia Airports Berhad. .
Mentri Besar Datuk Ahmad Said said the Singapore budget airline recently wrote to Malaysia Airports, stating its commitment to serve the route.
"Malaysia Airports officials informed the state government that Tiger Airways would be coming to Kuala Terengganu," he said after making a day tour to Kenyir Lake yesterday.
Ahmad said the state government had also agreed to absorb all taxes and fees incurred by Tiger Airways for the first three years of it its operations here.
This means the airline's airport taxes, landing, parking and aerobridge fees will be paid to Malaysia Airports by the state government.
"We hope the airfare from Singapore to Terengganu and vice-versa will be very affordable to further boost the tourism industry," he said.
Ahmad said similar incentives would be given to any other international airlines that was interested in making the airport here their regional transportation hub.
Tiger Airways will be the second carrier flying the Singapore-Kuala Terengganu route after Firefly, which is offering three flights in a week starting next month.
Ahmad said his government was also in discussion with China Airlines to operate a direct flight from Guangzhou, China to Kuala Terengganu.
On another matter, Ahmad said the state government had commissioned a consultant to plan a cable-car service at Kenyir lake.
He said the state government had also allocated RM50mil, this year for the purpose of developing Kenyir lake.
Meanwhile, in Kuching, Sarawak, State Tourism and Urban Development Minister Datuk Michael Manyin said the state was in talks with Tiger Airways and Jetstar Asia to launch direct flights between Singapore and Miri.
Michael Manyin said the proposed direct air links would support the state's efforts to promote tourism attractions, like the Mulu and Niah National Parks and the Kelabit highlands, in the northern region.
"It will allow us to offer our various packages in culture, adventure and nature to entice the Singaporeans, expatriates and tourists in Singapore to the northern region," he added during the Sarawak state assembly yesterday.