Malaysia Airlines (MAS) is to remove first class from at least some of its 11 Airbus A330-300s and may reconfigure its 37 Boeing 737-400s and -500s to all-economy configuration.

The airline is circumspect about plans that reportedly come after talks failed with an unnamed Brazilian carrier and at least two mainland Chinese carriers for the sale of up to 10 A330-300s.

The carrier owns 10 A330-300s and leases one from an unspecified source.

A MAS spokeswoman denies the claims about the sale, however, and says: "The removal of the A330 first class facilities is to adapt to our customers' needs and is not resulting from failure to sell or lease the aircraft. The MAS A330 was never marketed either for sale or lease recently."

She is unable to say how many A330s MAS will alter or when the re-fit will take place and says there is not yet a firm plan for the 737 project. The plans come after MAS posted a 604.6 million ringgit ($159 million) net loss for the fiscal year ended 31 March 1999 which came despite aircraft sales and restructuring.

MAS says that before the end of the current fiscal year it will reverse the result which marked a significant slide from the 226.3 million ringgit net loss it reported for the fiscal year 1997/98.

Source: Flight Daily News