KLIA handles 20.3 mln passengers in first five months

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SEPANG (June 27): The Kuala Lumpur International Airport (KLIA) handled a record 20.3 million passengers in the first five months of this year, an increase of 12 per cent compared with 18.2 million passengers recorded over the same period last year. Malaysia Airports Holding Bhd (MAHB) Managing Director Datuk Badlisham Ghazali said between January and May, the KLIA-Main Terminal Building (MTB) also registered passenger movement of 26.7 million. "This significant growth in traffic performance was due to the rising demand for air travel, expansion of routes and increased frequencies by both full service and low-cost carriers. "We have long surpassed the original target growth in our business direction document which was to record 60 million passengers, annually, by the year 2014," he said in his speech at KLIA's 16th anniversary here today. He said the tragedy of the missing flight MH370 carrying 239 passengers and crew members, did not have a big impact on tourist arrivals to the country as the Ministry of Tourism actively conducted promotional activities for Visit Malaysia Year 2014. Badlisham said MAHB also revised the target to record over 100 million passengers by 2020 under its new five-year business direction. Last year, MAHB recorded 79.6 million passengers at all its 39 airports in the country which included five international, 16 domestic and 18 short take-off and landing ports, including 47.5 million passengers at KLIA. "This is a growth of 19.1 per cent from that registered in 2012 for KLIA and the highest, year-on-year increase since 2014," he added. A total of 63 airlines operate from KLIA to more than one hundred destinations.   Last year, KLIA welcomed seven new airlines, namely Malindo Air, Air France, Turkish Airlines, Philippine Airlines, Iraqi Airways, Regent Airways and Shanghai Airlines.