25 April 2014
The International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO) and IKRAM Premier Consulting have given the green light to Kuala Lumpur International Airport 2 (klia2) to start operations on May 2 as scheduled.
Acting Transport Minister Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Hussein said both parties have stated that the RM4 billion low-cost terminal is fit and safe for use.
klia2 complied with international safety standards set by ICAO, as detailed in the United Nations agency’s technical audit report that was tabled in the cabinet on April 18.
“The Certificate of Completion and Compliance was obtained by the airport (Malaysia Airports Holdings Bhd, MAHB) on April 18 and the Operational Readiness and Airport Transfer testing will continue until the end of the month,” Hishammuddin told reporters after witnessing the ceremony to hand over klia2's air traffic control tower to the Department of Civil Aviation (DCA) yesterday.
The RM55 million control tower, dubbed Tower West, is the tallest in the world at 133.8m above land and 141.9m above sea level.
Work on the tower began on May 1, 2012 and was completed on March 1, last year by Perkasa Jauhari Sdn Bhd, a Malaysian company.
Hishammuddin praised those involved in the klia2 project.
He said by completing the airport on time, they had proved their detractors wrong.
He said MAHB had performed a tremendous job in ensuring airport operations could begin as planned, despite cynicism among various quarters.
"This is something for us to celebrate as we have proved the critics wrong and managed to overcome the hurdles and pitfalls which initially threatened to delay the opening of klia2.
"This is a key milestone en route to the start of operations at klia2, scheduled for May 2.
"It is an iconic national project, which seeks to cement Malaysia's position as a leading hub for low-cost aviation."
Hishammuddin also gave a historic "clearance for landing" command from the control tower to the first two commercial aircraft, MH402 and MH604, to land at the airport's runways.
At first contact, the pilot of flight MH402 said: "Good morning, Kuala Lumpur. This is Malaysian Five Four Zero Two established on localiser runway three three", to which Hishammuddin replied from the control tower: "Malaysian Five Four Zero Two, good morning. This is Kuala Lumpur Tower. Continue approach runway three three."
At the final contact, Hishammuddin's voice could be heard saying "Malaysian Five Four Zero Two, surface wind 80 degrees five knots, be advised runway surface is wet, runway three three cleared to land."
He then added: "It was nice talking to you."
The two planes landed at the same time on runways 2 and 3.
Hishammuddin hinted that klia2 would most likely be officially launched in June, a month after its opening.
"I have indicated to the cabinet that the launch could be within a month of the opening.
"So it will probably be on June 2 but what is more important is I want everything to be operational from day one."
DCA director-general Datuk Azharuddin Abdul Rahman said Malaysia was the first country in Asean to have a three-runway system. Business Times reported on Tuesday that Malindo Airways would be the first airline to land at klia2 just past midnight on May 1, followed by Philippines' Cebu Pacific Airlines, which is due to arrive at 12.35am and depart at 1.20am.
The average aircraft movement (take-off and landing) per day on runway 3 from May 2 is expected to be 56, said MAHB's managing director Tan Sri Bashir Ahmad Abdul Majid.
He said the movement would increase to some 400 a day come May 9 as AirAsia Group, which would be the largest user of klia2, would start its operations at the terminal on the same day.
Original Source: www.nst.com.my
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