The announcement will see the 5-star airline commence the year-round daily service on 30 March, when the number of flights on the Kuala Lumpur to Auckland route will increase from six to seven per week, meaning an additional 52 flights in total each year.
Tourism New Zealand's Director of Trade, PR and Major Events, Justin Watson, says the continuation of a daily service beyond the traditional high season is a significant boost for the industry and will support Tourism New Zealand's efforts to boost arrivals out of Malaysia.
"Achieving growth in air capacity is a key priority for Tourism New Zealand and sustainable air connectivity is also a feature of the Tourism Industry Association's new Tourism 2025 Framework. As such, the decision by Malaysia Airlines to maintain enhanced services is a positive and welcomed one," says Mr Watson.
Glenn Wedlock, Auckland Airport's general manager aeronautical commercial, says this is a fantastic result that reflects the success that Malaysia Airlines has seen over the last 12 months on their Auckland services.
"As part of our Ambition 2020 Asia strategy, we have been working very hard to secure growth from the High Opportunity Target, 'HOT', markets of Malaysia, India and emerging South East Asia," says Mr Wedlock.
"These markets offer the potential for annual double digit growth. We believe Malaysia and India alone could deliver over 120,000 arrivals and over $300 million of value to the New Zealand tourism industry by 2020.
"The markets have responded incredibly well to our initial partnership work and capacity growth programmes with Malaysia Airlines and Tourism New Zealand. In September, Malaysian visitors on holiday to New Zealand increased by 50% and holidaying Indian visitors also increased by 19%," says Mr Wedlock.
"This latest increase from Malaysia Airlines will not only drive additional visitor spend in the tourism sector by at least $10 million per annum but also provide New Zealand travellers and exporters even greater access to these important destinations for travel and trade.
Malaysia Airlines' Regional Senior Vice President Australia / New Zealand / South West Pacific, Lee Poh Kait, says, "the services between Auckland and Malaysia have been well received and the increased frequency is in line with Malaysia Airlines' continued efforts to position itself as a superior airline across the New Zealand market.
"The support we have received from our industry partners has assisted us with the expansion in New Zealand and is also thanks to the ongoing efforts of the 20,000 staff at Malaysia Airlines", says Mr Lee.