New Malaysia Airlines CEO faces numerous challenges

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It will be an interesting ride over the next few months for Azmil Zahruddin (above), who has been named as Malaysia Airlines’ new CEO after Idris Jala left to join the Malaysian government.

Idris came on board in 2005 and has brought the airline on an even keel after years of losses. The Malaysian government did step in to ensure MAS’ survival, but the carrier also had to make major changes to its operations and cut costs. It was only just appearing to be reaping the benefits when it was hit by the twin effects of high fuel prices and the economic crisis.

There are still many challenges ahead for the carrier – coping with competition from the likes of AirAsia, increasing loads and yields, building up a profitable and sustainable route network, and ensuring that it is better suited to cope with recovery after the economic crisis.

The attention will be on Azmil, who was chief financial officer at MAS, as the carrier copes with all of these. He will need all the luck and and help he can get.

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