Govt stops AirAsia launching service from Kota Kinabalu to Sibu

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Malaysia's transport minister says the ministry will look into the government ordered cessation of AirAsia's daily Kota Kinabalu-Sibu service.

Following input from two East Malaysia business associations, transport minister Ong Tee Keat says the ministry will look into the scrapping of the AirAsia service between the two East Malaysian cities, which was scheduled to launch on 25 October, Malaysia national news agency Bernama quotes the minister as saying.

MAS unit MASWings operates 28 weekly flights on the route according to Innovata.

"I told (the parties) that it involved an agreement between the government and MASWings and that it came into being before I took over the (transport ministry) portfolio," Ong is reported as saying. "I have to look into the delicate points contained in the agreement because that might involve, perhaps, not just one sector, but we must always bear in mind 'people first'."

MAS says in a statement that MASWings has a contract with the government that gives MasWings exclusive rights to certain routes in East Malaysia.