Malaysian Airline System, branded as Malaysia Airlines, is a major airline operating flights from Kuala Lumpur International Airport to destinations throughout Asia as well as a handful of destinations in Europe and Oceania. Malaysia Airlines is the flag carrier of Malaysia and a member of the Oneworld airline alliance. Malaysia Airlines has two airline subsidiaries: Firefly and MASwings. Firefly operates scheduled flights from its two home bases Penang International Airport and Subang International Airport. MASwings focuses on inter-Borneo flights.
An initiative by the Ocean Steamship Company resulted in the incorporation in Singapore in 1937, Malayan Airways Limited. But the first paying passengers could be welcomed on board only some 10 years later. In 1957, the airline became a state-run stock corporation. In 1960, the airline launched its first long-haul international flight. When Malaya, Singapore, Sabah and Sarawak formed the Federation of Malaysia in 1963, the airline’s name was changed, from Malayan Airways to Malaysian Airlines. In 1966, following Singapore’s separation from the federation, the airline’s name was changed again, to Malaysia-Singapore Airlines. The differing needs of the two shareholders, however, led to the break-up of the airline just 6 years later. The Singapore government preferred to develop the airline’s international routes, while the Malaysian government had no choice but to develop the domestic network first before going regional and eventually international. MSA ceased operations in 1972, with its assets split between two new airlines; Malaysian Airline System (now Malaysia Airlines), and Singapore Airlines.
The disappearance and presumed crash of Flight 370 in March 2014 in mysterious circumstances shook consumer confidence in the airline. Just four months later, Flight 17 was shot down over eastern Ukraine.