MAVCOM set to take civil aviation to higher plane

FARAH ADILLA AND AMIR HISYAM RASID


THE Malaysian Aviation Commission (MAVCOM), set up a year ago to regulate economic and commercial matters related to civil aviation, is coming up with measures to champion consumers’ rights.

A brainchild of Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak, its goal is to promote a commercially viable, consumer-oriented and resilient civil aviation industry, which supports the nation’s economic growth. Since the nation’s independence, there has not been a conscious effort by the government to set up such a commission until the current administration.

MAVCOM executive chairman Tan Sri Abdullah Ahmad said this was to ensure that airport operators were accountable for their services.

“We strive to achieve more and do better for the industry and consumers.

“We believe that they are equally important and we will not compromise one over the other.

“We have invested in the ecosystem and we must focus on both sectors to achieve our mandate,” he said in an exclusive interview with the New Sunday Times recently.

Abdullah, who served as the Royal Malaysian Air Force chief from 2003 to 2004, said studies had been conducted on industry patterns and impact on consumers, which would help set MAVCOM’s goals for a higher level of effective competition.

“MAVCOM is developing a framework that links aeronautical revenues to customers and stakeholders’ satisfaction levels.

“It will be introduced this year to ensure airport operators remain committed to and accountable for improving their services and financial efficiency, for the benefit of air travellers in Malaysia.

“We will include studies on economic contribution of the aviation industry, as well as industry review and outlook,” said Abdullah, who was previously chief executive officer of Langkawi Aerospace Training Centre and held directorships in Atlan Holdings Bhd, Naluri Corporation Bhd and DFZ Capital Bhd.

On the consumer front, MAVCOM is coming up with a periodical report on the complaints management system and a second consumer survey this year to gauge consumers’ level of awareness and understanding of their rights.

“The system will provide us with a firm baseline in determining the most effective services and solutions for the industry and consumers,” said Abdullah, who graduated from the Royal Air Force Staff College in Bracknell, the United Kingdom, in 1982.

He said MAVCOM would continue to engage consumer associations and multinational corporations, as well as display its notices and videos in airports in Malaysia.

“We will continue with the display of our educational videos on the ERL (Express Rail Link) this year and explore the opportunity of radio advertising.

“We will continue to conduct road shows and educational talks in colleges and public forums with the media, as well as engagements with social media influencers,” said Abdullah, who also holds degrees and certificates from the Monterey Naval Academy and Harvard University, and Master’s in International Relations and Strategic Studies from the University of Lancaster.