The market for business jet travel in Malaysia is expected to double within 10 years as businesses realise the savings in travel costs compared to commercial airlines, according to an aviation consultant.

J2B Consulting Co Ltd MD Jean-Bernard Boura said business aviation, which can be tailored to specific needs for executives, is considered a new area in South-East Asia that will be explored. He said at present there are 45-50 business jets being used for executive travel in Malaysia.

“We can double the number of aircraft in the next 10 years or even quicker, depending on how well we can educate people on the advantages of using business aircraft.”

“We can actually save time and money. We can save travel time by about 50% compared to commercial planes” he told The Malaysian Reserve on the sidelines of the Maritime International Showcase Malaysia 2015 in Straits Quay, Penang last week.

He said Malaysia has the potential to attract business aviation companies that can collaborate with local players to fill this niche travel segment.

“There is a good future for business aviation in the whole region, Malaysia in particular, because its geographical location is strategic.”

“There is space for the industry to grow in terms of runways, airports and services. The industry actually started 10 years ago in Malaysia”, he said.

Boura said the business aviation industry is driven by high net worth individuals who can see the value in having the convenience to fly anytime in an efficient and secured way.

He said it is timely for local players to tap into the business aviation industry as it provides huge potential, especially in areas like ground handling, maintenance, operations and management, as well as hangarage.

Few Malaysian companies are already involved in the business aviation sector especially in the areas of ground handling, hangarage, as well as operations and management, Boura said.

An interview of Jean-Bernard Boura for The Malaysian Reserve.