It was reported that the loss-making national carrier Malaysia Airlines will move out of its landmark headquarters in the capital, heightening speculation that it will sell the building. The shift was aimed at "managing costs" and "streamlining operations".
Idris Jala, the new managing director wants Malaysia Airlines operations to be concentrated in two main areas-Subang, just west of Kuala Lumpur, and at Kuala Lumpur International Airport, south of the capital. The bulk of airline's staff numbering a few hundred in the 35-storey building Kuala Lumpur's prime business area would move to Subang. But the airline would continue to maintain its ticketing and other related services in the building.
Malaysia Airlines staff would be moved in two phases, the first from this month to March and the next in June. Last month, the carrier came under fire from the upper house of parliament after it proposed to sell the building to raise funds and trim losses for the airline.
The national carrier ended 2005 in a troubled state after posting two consecutive quarters of losses and facing calls for costs to be slashed and better contingency plans made for rising fuel prices. Last month Malaysian Premier Abdullah Ahmad Badawi said the government was willing to extend loans to Malaysia Airlines to help it return to profitability, but ruled out a bail-out.
What is next for MAS? I ardently hope it is hope that it would be in the good hand.