11 September 2019
The Malaysian Aviation Commission (Mavcom) has imposed on AirAsia Bhd and AirAsia X Bhd a penalty of RM200,000 each for charging credit card, debit card and online banking processing fees separately from their base fare.
Mavcom, in a statement, said both airlines were found to have contravened subparagraph 3(2) of the Malaysia Aviation Consumer Protection Code 2016 (MACPC), which required full disclosure of the final price of the airfare.
“The commission has been monitoring from June 1, 2019 for compliance with the new provisions of the MACPC.
“As part of the due process to determine whether a contravention had been committed, Mavcom issued show cause letters to both airlines and afforded opportunities to them to provide factors to mitigate the quantum of the penalties,” it said.
Section 69(4) of the Malaysian Aviation Commission Act 2015 [Act 771], together with paragraph 22 of the MACPC, empowered the commission to impose a financial penalty for non-compliance of the MACPC of an amount not exceeding RM200,000, and in the case of a second or subsequent non-compliance, an amount 10 times of the financial penalty imposed for the first non-compliance.
“Upon thorough evaluation and taking into consideration the written representations by the airlines, the commission imposed the penalty for the first violation of subparagraph 3(2) of the MACPC, for the period commencing June 1, 2019 to Aug 9, 2019,” the statement said.
The MACPC came into effect on July 1 this year and was published in line with Mavcom’s aim to protect the rights and interests of consumers.
Mavcom also imposed a penalty of RM1,179,889 on Malaysia Airports (Sepang) Sdn Bhd (MA Sepang), a subsidiary of Malaysia Airports Holdings Bhd, for failing to meet several requirements of the Airports Quality of Service (QoS) Framework from January to March this year.
The Airports QoS Framework was implemented at Kuala Lumpur International Airport and klia2 on Sept 1 last year to improve airport services for users, including passengers, airlines and ground handlers.
Pursuant to section 98A(3)(b) of the Malaysian Aviation Commission Act, the commission was authorised to impose an amount not exceeding five per cent of MA Sepang’s annual turnover.
AirAsia, AirAsia X and MA Sepang received letters from the commission on the imposition of the financial penalties on Sept 6.
Mavcom executive chairman Dr Nungsari Ahmad Radhi said yesterday air traffic in Malaysia numbered at more than 100 million passengers per annum.
“Given this large consumer base, the commission has set in place the MACPC and Airports QoS Framework to protect the rights and interests of the aviation consumers, as well as a means to increase the level of services in the industry.
“These actions are intended to move the aviation industry in Malaysia towards an improved level of service, integrity and transparency, in line with Mavcom’s long-term objectives for the industry.”