KUALA LUMPUR, March 20 — The Kuala Lumpur International Airport (KLIA) should already be among the top 10 in the world instead of coming in 67th in the Skytrax World Airport Awards 2023, Transport Minister Anthony Loke said today.
Commenting on KLIA’s five-place decline in this year’s ranking, Loke said the airport had been considered among the best in the world when it was launched nearly 25 years ago and could be again with concerted effort from relevant parties.
“To be very honest, I’m not happy with that ranking. It is a huge task for the airport management to improve the rankings and make KLIA a landmark every Malaysian is proud of,” he said when opening the Plaza Premium First and Plaza Premium Lounge at KLIA Terminal 1, Sepang.
“When it first started operating, it was modern and advanced. Everyone admired it, but if we look at the ranking 10 years ago, we were ranked 14th and five years ago, we were 44th. It shows a downward trend and it is something that we need to pay attention to.
“We have identified a few issues to make airport visitors’ experience here to be more smooth and seamless. First of all is the aerotrain service, which needs to be fixed immediately. The maintenance of the airport, the baggage handling system and other factors such as its ambiance,” he told reporters after the launch.
Loke said Malaysia Airports Holdings Bhd (MAHB) has already started the upgrading works and will continue gradually.
He added that the upgrade was important in order to create a good first impression on arrivals in the country.
“The airport is the first entry point of foreign visitors in Malaysia. If we don’t take care of the airport, it will give us a bad impression as a country. From getting off the plane, claiming their baggage to the immigration counters, it should be a smooth journey for them. I’m calling for all related parties to join forces and together make our airports among the best again,” he said.