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Malaysian consulate, tourism sector planning Davao-KL ‘nights’ to help promote AirAsia flights

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DAVAO’S TOURISM sector and the Malaysian consulate in the city are planning a promotional campaign to help boost passenger traffic for AirAsia’s Davao-Kuala Lumpur (KL) flights that will start Dec. 21. Malaysian Consul General Mohd Jafri Bin Mohd Sharif, in an interview with BusinessWorld, said they are looking at holding “Davao Nights” in KL and vice versa. “It’s an event or occasion to promote Davao in Kuala Lumpur. It’s not yet completely discussed but we already initiated this kind of event before,” Mr. Sharif said. “There’s a lot of people in Kuala Lumpur who don’t know what Davao is all about and it seems like Davao itself, they don’t know about Kuala Lumpur,” he added. AirAsia Group Chief Executive Officer Anthony Francis Fernandes announced the opening of the four-times-a-week Davao-KL flights during the 4th Davao Investment Conference in July. The new route would become the low-cost airline’s fourth direct route from Malaysia to the Philippines after Manila, Cebu, and Kalibo in Aklan. AirAsia Philippines already operates several domestic flights to and from Davao. Mr. Fernandes also said that AirAsia is considering Davao as a potential hub for connectivity within the Association of Southeast Asian Nations. The local business sector has called on the government to act on the pending rehabilitation plan for the Davao International Airport and create a separate agency that will manage its maintenance and operations. — Maya M. Padillo

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