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AirAsia and its LCC rivals seek post-COVID rebirth

Malaysia-based budget airline suffers record quarterly loss of $237m

AirAsia pioneered the cut-rate airline model in Southeast Asia with a determination to keep seats filled and its jets in the sky, but new restrictions will likely test this business model.   © Reuters

SINGAPORE -- Low-cost airlines that contributed a new kind of connectivity to Southeast Asia in the years before COVID-19 find themselves with a little hope now that the strictest pandemic-related restrictions are being wound down but still anxious about their post-pandemic survival.

On Tuesday, Malaysia-based AirAsia announced a net loss of 992 million ringgit ($237 million) for the April-June quarter, falling into the red from a net profit of 17 million ringgit a year earlier. The figure represents the airline's largest loss since 2004 listing.

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