Saturday, February 4, 2012

2011 airports' passenger traffic up 10.6pc

PUTRAJAYA: Passenger traffic at the country's airports last year rose 10.63 per cent to 65.343 million passengers, from 59.065 million passengers in 2010.

Transport Minister Datuk Seri Kong Cho Ha said the increase was the second consecutive double-digit annual growth, with the 2010 figure 12 per cent over that of 2009.

He said the country's security and stability contributed to last year's good performance, which surpassed the ministry's target of 62 million passengers.

The growth was also encouraging as it came amid economic uncertainty in Europe and the United States in the last few years, he said.

"It shows the country was growing quite well and on the right track," he told reporters at his office here today.

Kong said the ministry targets passenger traffic to grow only five per cent this year amid the global economic uncertainty, especially in Europe and America.

He said last year, international passenger traffic grew 10.03 per cent to 30.89 million passengers, from 28.007 million in 2010, while domestic passenger traffic rose 10.9 per cent to 34.454 million, from 31.056 million.

Last year the Kuala Lumpur International Airport (KLIA) handled 37.700 million passengers, followed by the airports of Kota Kinabalu (5.809 million), Penang (4.6 million) and Kuching (4.287 million).

Other airports handling over a million passengers were Miri (1.857 million), Langkawi (1.504 million), Johor Baharu (1.338 million), Sibu (1.133 million), Kota Baharu (1.132 million) and Subang (1.320 million).

On PJ Utara MP Tony Pua's allegation in a news portal today that the construction cost of the West Coast Expressway had escalated from its original estimate of RM3.015 billion, Kong said the project was planned a long time ago.

Kong said the expressway was long overdue and it was very important to implement the project immediately in order to stimulate the economies of the states involved, adding if it was not implemented now, the cost would escalate further in future. - Bernama

SOURCE: The New Straits Times | 30 January 2012 |