Laura Lee, Kuala Lumpur
(15th Mar 2005)
THE three-day MATTA Fair which ended on Sunday attracted 72,000 visitors, slightly lower than last year's 76,000 figure.
Organising chairman, Mr Ngiam Foon, said it was a “credible crowd” considering the fair was held just three weeks after Malaysia Airlines (MAS) Travel Fair. The latter attracted a total of 83,500 visitors – 40,000 in Kuala Lumpur, 17,500 in Penang, 9,500 in Kuching and the rest in Kota Kinabalu – and total sales of RM115 million (US$30.35 million) after the two-day fair was extended for two more days.
First-time participants, Air Sahara and Jet Airways, will be mounting their inaugural flights to Malaysia in late April or early May from Chennai. Both airlines will be using the 168-seater Boeing 737-800.
Air Sahara general manager for Southeast Asia, Mr Koustav M Dhar, said it would be launching the Mumbai-Singapore route around the same time, and the Mumbai-Bangkok route by mid-2005.
Its newly appointed country manager for the Kuala Lumpur office, Mr GJ Vijay Kumar, who is preparing for the new office opening in April, said it would be recruiting about 125 agents to sell for the airline, of which about 55 to 75 would be from the Klang Valley.