Malaysia Airlines And FlightSafety Boeing Training International To Form Asian Regional Training Center

Malaysia Airlines (MAS) and FlightSafety Boeing Training International (FSBTI) announced today they are creating an aviation training joint venture in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, to serve the needs of carriers in the region. MAS Executive Vice President Dato Bashir Ahmad and FSBTI President Wake Smith signed a memorandum of understanding today at the 43rd International Paris Air Show.

The arrangement includes a long-term agreement whereby the carrier will use the joint venture as its exclusive training provider. The joint venture also will provide entitlement training for The Boeing Company to offer carriers in the region.

"The Asian Regional Aviation Training Center will be the center of excellence for flight and technical training for the Asia region," said Dato Bashir. "It will provide the complete training requirements for pilots and aircraft engineers for Malaysia Airlines as well as FlightSafety Boeing's Asian customers."

For FSBTI, the announcement is a major step in further building its training presence throughout the world. It will allow Boeing to provide better downstream training service to its airline customers in Asia, and it is an element of FSBTI's strategy to provide a broad array of training solutions that are world class and locally delivered, Smith said.

Malaysia Airlines, the national carrier of Malaysia, has continuously maintained its position as one of the world's most reputable airlines. The carrier is one of the largest airlines in Southeast Asia and operates one of the region's most modern air fleets. Its passenger traffic growth has nearly doubled in the last five years.

FSBTI is jointly owned by FlightSafety International (a unit of Berkshire Hathaway) and The Boeing Company. Drawing on the combined strengths of its parent companies, FSBTI is today the world's largest airline training provider of flight and technical training.

"It is our objective at Malaysia Airlines to support the Malaysian government's vision to create an aerospace hub in Malaysia," said Tan Sri Dato Tajudin Ramli, chairman of Malaysian Airlines and the Malaysian Aerospace Council. "Our strategy has been to work with the biggest and the best in the industry to fast-track the transfer of aerospace technology to Malaysia. We are proud to be associated with FSBTI, which is recognized worldwide for its training quality and technology leadership."

The training center is expected to begin operation in the fourth quarter of this year. Initially, it will use the existing state-of-the-art Malaysian Airlines Training facilities, which will be further upgraded and expanded to address the demands of the growing Asian market.

"We intend to make the Kuala Lumpur training facility a world-class operation," Smith said. "Malaysia Airlines brings to the venture an outstanding facility and experienced flight and technical instructors and support personnel. Together with the resources of FSBTI, we believe this partnership will be a great success."

For further information:
Bill Cogswell
33-1-41-57-44-30 (Le Bourget)
Steve Smith
office: 206-544-0869 (Seattle)