17-12-2012 @6:30 pm: Yours truly has been informed by YB Datuk Ismail Sabri, Minister of Trade, Co-operatives and Consumerism, that his Ministry has taken the necessary actions to stop AirAsia from selling of tickets beyond 31 March 2013 as AirAsia’s AOC is only valid until 31 March 2013.
It has been widely reported in the newspapers recently that the Air Operation Certificate (AOC) of AirAsia has been granted by Department of Civil Aviation (DCA) for a six month period until March 31, 2013 due to failure to meet the regulatory requirement as reported in HERE. Normally, OAC is granted to an airline for a two years period. Up to this date, the said press report by the Sun Daily and New Strait Times have not been refuted by the management of AirAsia or denied by Minister of Transport or DCA.
The DCA is established as an agency under the Ministry of Transport (MOT) Malaysia to provide safe, efficient and orderly flow of air transportation, and to regulate aviation activities in Malaysia. The rapid expansion of Malaysia’s aviation and air transport industries is largely due to the pragmatic approach taken by DCA in ensuring compliance to standards and recommended practices of the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO), in HERE.
Strictly speaking, as of now AirAsia could only operate until 31st March 2013. It had to re-apply for a new AOC after 31 March 2013. The approval depends on whether AirAsia has complied with all the regulatory requirements by then. Only God knows what will happen the AOC of AirAsia after 31 March 2013.
Marketing is about making promises and then keeping them. Can AirAsia guarantee that it will be able to obtain an AOC after 31 March 2013 and fulfill part of the bargain by flying the passengers after that date? Only God knows what will happen to the AOC of AirAsia after 31 March 2013!
Why must unsuspecting consumers be allowed to be seduced by such an advertisement?
In October 2012, YB Datuk Ismail Sabri, the Minister of Domestic Trade, Cooperatives and Consumerism, had announced that from 1 January 2013 those found to have put up misleading or false ads in terms of quantity, quality, price, effectiveness and availability of products could be fined up to RM5,000 or jailed up to three years, in HERE.
Malaysians welcome the announcement by the said Minister. In the interim, the Ministry of Domestic Trade, Co-operatives and Consumerism should give warnings to those who published misleading ads so as to protect consumers. Of course, misleading ads are not confined to AirAsia only.
The above advertisement was one of the many advertisements by AirAsia in its website and the printed media. Below were the other ads that have been published previously.
How many passengers got the bargains as advertised?