KUCHING: Chief Minister Abang Johari Openg said that once borders reopen, the state government is looking at charter flights to improve the Sarawak tourism industry.
He said Hornbill Skyways Sdn Bhd, a regional aircraft charter service provider. It had been engaged by the state government to provide charter flights linking Sarawak with Singapore and other destinations.
He said the Covid-19 pandemic, with several scheduled flights cancelled, had seriously affected the tourism industry Sarawak.
So we are looking at providing services for charter flights. To decide the number of passengers entering the state, we may collaborate with industry players.
“We can lease the aircraft once we have enough numbers to bring in tourists, particularly from nearby countries such as Singapore,” he said.
At the ‘Sarawak 2021 Budget: Towards a High Income Society in 2030’ webinar, organised today by the Sarawak Business Federation, Abang Johari spoke.
“This idea will of course, only materialise or be adopted until cases of Covid-19 are no longer prevalent. Charter flights will assist the tourism and service sectors to recover more rapidly.
He added that to boost the state’s air connectivity, Sarawak would need to have its own airline business.
Moreover, we want to have our own airline, link to potential destinations like Hong Kong, Japan, South Korea and Australia, and introduce more foreign tourists to the state.
“We are also looking at the correct mechanism for setting up the company, as it may not be completely state-owned. I believe the private sector needs to be guided by an airline company,” he said.
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