MAS chief executive rules out future tie-up with AirAsia

KUALA LUMPUR - Malaysia Airlines (MAS) chief executive Christoph Mueller says he would oppose any attempt to consolidate the national airline with AirAsia again.

"I'm a strict opponent of this," he said while speaking at the Global Airport Development (GAD) Asia Conference 2015 on Thursday.

MAS and AirAsia attempted a share swap in a bid to collaborate and reduce competition in 2012 but the deal was scrapped due to pressure from MAS workers' unions.

While predicting there could be consolidation in the aviation industry regionally in the next five-years, Mueller said each county should have at least two carriers.

He said a monopoly, especially for domestic routes, was not good for consumers or the country.

Mueller said competition was not something threatening and was good for the market.

"Without competition every carrier will become complacent and laid back," he said.

At the same time, Mueller said carriers cannot offer fare prices below their cost.

"You have this phenomenon in the Malaysia-Australia (route) sector," he said, adding that, in the long run, such a practice could destroy the market as customers get used to fairs that are unrealistic.