KUCHING (July 23): The Ministry of Transport Sarawak (MOTS) is encouraging active engagement among the agencies and players in the logistics and air transport industry.
In a statement, its minister Dato Sri Lee Kim Shin pointed out this would help resolve ground issues and move forward in developing the cargo and air transportation industry in Sarawak.
On July 20, MOTS led by Lee had an engagement and meeting with the relevant government agencies, airlines, associations and business chambers from the logistics and air transport industry to tackle issues related to airport and STOLport facilities and safety in Sarawak.
The engagement was held at the Malaysia Airport Sdn Bhd (MASB) office at the Kuching International Airport (KIA) and was the follow-up to the Sarawak Transport Committee Meeting which was held earlier on July 8, which was also chaired by Lee.
Prior to the meeting, Lee along with MOTS officers and representatives from freight forwarding agencies visited the KIA Cargo Terminal, Mascargo Warehouse and Customs Department Office.
The statement added among the points highlighted during the engagement were parking spaces for lorries; road width needing to be widened; Customs clearance office too cramped’ and limited space at the warehouse especially for Pos Aviation and Raya Airways.
It said in this regard, the Customs Department, Post Aviation and Raya Airways were asked to put up their proposal for their warehouses and office requirements to MASB and MOTS for further action with the related stakeholders.
Lee and the committee also touched on the overall cleanliness in the passenger terminal building and lack of facilities at the International Departure Hall for passengers to relax before their flight.
According to the statement, a MASB Headquarters representative responded MASB would look into the matter and might introduce the mobile kiosk to serve the International Departure Hall, similar to what has been done in KLIA.
He said the percentage of international passengers in KIA is too small and MASB could not find any interested vendors to service the area.
Lee also highlighted that airports are an essential part of the air transport system.
“They play a vital role not only within the macro environment of transportation but provide local businesses with access to the global market.
“They help retain and attract business to a community, thus providing jobs and economic prosperity to the community.
“Safe, efficient air service also creates an environment that allows both existing and new businesses to succeed, thus increasing a community’s tax base,” he was quoted as saying.