Officials in Malaysia have revealed plans to launch a new airline having signed a $1.5 billion deal with aircraft manufacturer Bombardier.
The deal will see Malaysia purchase 20 CS100 aircraft, with options for an additional 20, for use by the new airline, flymojo.
The carrier will be based out of Johor Bahru in the south and Kota Kinabalu in east Malaysia.
The announcement was made at Malaysia’s Langkawi International Maritime & Aerospace Exhibition earlier.
Upon execution of a firm purchase agreement, flymojo is expected to become the first customer and operator of the CS100 aircraft in the region.
“The announcement of a new airline in Malaysia is an exciting way to kick off LIMA,” said Malaysian deputy minister of transport, Aziz Kaprawi.
“With flymojo’s primary hub at Senai International Airport, Johor and secondary hub in Kota Kinabalu, Sabah, the airline’s ultra-modern fleet of CS100 aircraft will play a key role in improving connectivity between the Peninsula and Sabah and Sarawak, as well as other parts of the region.
“In addition, as the only airline utilising the Southern Corridor as its headquarters, flymojo will transform Senai into a key regional aviation and logistics hub - augmenting the government’s initiatives in developing Iskandar Malaysia and the Southern Corridor.
“Further strengthening Kota Kinabalu’s standing as a gateway into Malaysia, flymojo will also boost tourism into Sabah and Sarawak.”
It is reported the new airline will take off in October this year.
“On behalf of the government of Canada, I would like to congratulate Malaysia’s flymojo and Bombardier Commercial Aircraft as they work together to bring the CSeries aircraft to Malaysia and the ASEAN region,” said the Ed Fast, minister of international trade, Canada.
“As the travel needs in the region increase, Canada is committed to supporting the growth of economic ties between our two countries.”
Malaysia has been hit with three aviation disasters in the past year.
In December, an AirAsia plane crashed into the Java Sea while en route from Surabaya, Indonesia to Singapore, killing all 162 people on board.
In July last year, a Malaysia Airlines plane was shot down over pro-Russian rebel-held territory in eastern Ukraine, killing all 298 people on board.
In March last year, MH370 vanished shortly after taking off from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing in March 2014.
No trace of the plane has been found despite an extensive search.