The minister, Liow Tiong Lai, said he would meet Friday with Foxx to thank him for U.S. support in searching the Indian Ocean for Flight 370, which has been missing since March 8 with 239 people aboard.
Malaysia, as home country for the airline; China, as home to most of the passengers; and Australia, as closest to the search, are each contributing to searching an area of the ocean floor the size of West Virginia with three ships during the next year.
"I will call on Secretary Foxx for further assistance because we are doing deep-sea search now," Liow told USA TODAY. "We are moving well, so we are seeking U.S. support if they have any further equipment. Now we need more, to see if there is more technology and experts to find the plane."
Liow plans to visit the International Civil Aviation Organization, a branch of the United Nations that recommends airline policies, in Montreal next week to push for better flight tracking to prevent another Flight 370.
"Aircraft safety and security is crucial to the world," Liow said.
He will also urge ICAO to adopt resolutions for better access to crash sites because investigators are still unable to get to the part of Ukraine where Flight 17 was shot down July 17 with 298 people aboard. Despite an announced cease-fire, the site is still inaccessible.
"Winter is coming," Liow said. "We remain concerned that this will hamper the investigation."
So far, only 283 bodies have been retrieved, Liow said. "We still need to find all the bodies," he said.
While voice and data recorders were recovered from the plane, safety experts need to examine the wreckage to determine what happened, Liow said.
"We need to find out what actually happened to the plane," said Liow, who took office two weeks before Flight 17 was shot down. "We suspect definitely that it's a missile hitting the plane."
Liow will also ask Foxx and ICAO to support stronger coordination between governments and airlines about conflict zones that represent potential threats to airlines.
Liow, who served five years as health minister before becoming transportation minister, compared notification about military conflicts to alerts about the spread Ebola.
"It's for the safety and security for all people who use the routes," Liow said. "I think ICAO can play a bigger role."
The two disasters hit Malaysia hard, said Liow, who is the government's primary contact with families of victims.
"We are very, very depressed and very sad over these two incidents," Liow said. "We are very moved to see so many countries coming forward to help us."
Even before the disasters, the airline lost money for three years, with losses totaling $363 million last year, nearly three times the losses the year earlier.
The government has taken control as it reorganizes, which is expected to be completed by July 2015.
Liow said the airline is important to Malaysia because the economies of the airline and country grew together.
"It is iconic," Liow said of the airline. "There is a lot of emotion in it."
In August, Malaysia's state investment fund, a majority owner of the airline, announced a $1.9 billion overhaul that included cutting 6,000 of 20,000 workers. The goal is to return to profitability by 2017.
"We are going to be leaner," Liow said, perhaps reducing routes to South America.
The financial difficulties contrasted sharply with its reputation. The airline won numerous awards for the quality of its cabin crews, food and general excellence.
Mohsin Aziz, a stock analyst in Malaysia with Maybank Investment Bank, said the layoffs are "a necessary start." But the airline must also find the right size for its business, invest in technology and become more aggressive and effective in marketing, he said.
"The list goes on and on, really," Aziz said.
He said the airline's survival is important for the country and the traveler.
"If it goes away, then there will be a virtual monopoly dominated by AirAsia," Aziz said. "Monopoly in the airline industry is never good for the consumer."