There has been much speculation in recent months about the future of Malaysia Airlines’ long-haul routes, specifically those to Europe, after it became known that the airline was planning a radical restructuring and reports that much of its long-haul fleet, including its Airbus A380s, were being put up for sale.
At a press conference today incoming CEO Christoph Mueller outlined in very broad terms some aspects of the restructuring.
It is known that the restructuring will involve the transfer of operations to a new legal entity and approximately 6,000 job cuts.
Christoph Mueller would not be drawn on specific route decisions, other than to say that London was considered a flagship route and would stay.
Furthermore, the airline would seek joint-venture relationships with fellow Oneworld alliance partners.
We would not rule out some form of capacity cut, either through reducing its twice-daily London Heathrow-Kuala Lumpur frequency and/or by downsizing from an Airbus A380.
Published traffic data for this route suggests that a double-daily A380 is excessive.
There is also scope to form a joint-venture with British Airways, which returned to Kuala Lumpur only last week, with mutual code sharing on the route and “back and beyond” routes to from London and Kuala Lumpur, as BA currently has with American Airlines and Japan Airlines.
Further details are expected in the coming weeks.