Court rules AirAsia owes MAHB unit RM40.6m in unpaid passenger service charges

Danial Dzulkifly
AirAsia Group is ordered by the High Court to pay Malaysia Airports (Sepang) Sdn Bhd (MASSB) at least RM40.6 million owed in arrears of the passenger service charges. — Reuters pic

KUALA LUMPUR, July 18 — Budget airline giant AirAsia Group Berhad was today ordered by the High Court to pay Malaysia Airports (Sepang) Sdn Bhd (MASSB) at least RM40.6 million owed in arrears of the passenger service charges (PSC).

AirAsia also lost its application to strike out the suit when High Court judge Azimah Omar allowed a summary judgement by Malaysia Airports Holdings Bhd (MAHB) — the parent company of MASSB — to be entered in the three civil suits against the airlines, The Edge reported on its website today.

“The court rules that under Section 46 of the Malaysian Aviation Commission Act 2015 that the power to set charges lies with the Malaysian Aviation Commission (Mavcom) while Malaysia Airports (MAHB) is the body issued the licence to operate the airport. I am allowing Order 14 on all three cases,” the judge was quoted saying.

Order 14 of the Rules of High Court refers to when the defendant in the case has no defence to the claim.

AirAsia was also ordered to pay RM24,000 for all three lawsuits.

AirAsia’s legal representative Lim Tuck Sun was reported saying he company will file an appeal against the High Court judgment.

MAHB was represented by Shannon Rajan and Eric Gabriel Gomez.

The dispute was triggered after MAHB claimed uncollected airport taxes from AirAsia Group and AirAsia X amounting to RM36.12 million in December last year.

This was due to AirAsia refusing to collect RM73 PSC or better known as airport tax that Mavcom had imposed on non-Asean flights at the KLIA2.

Following the claims by MHAB, AirAsia had served MASSB a notice claiming almost RM480 million for losses incurred from operating at klia2.

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