LABUAN, March 8 (Bernama) -- Labuan's tourism industry is indicating signs of positive growth in the first two months of this year, with latest figures showing more tourists compared to the same corresponding period of last year.
Labuan Corporation Tourism and Culture Department in a statement to Bernama today said visitor arrivals to the duty-free-island in January showed improvement, registering a hike of 13.4 per cent (90,073 visitors) compared to the same period in 2016.
Minister of Federal Territories Datuk Seri Tengku Adnan Tengku Mansor during the Federal Territory Day last month said improved competitiveness and significant government support have strengthened the island's claim to be one of the premier tourism destinations.
"The sector continues to perform well, even with the challenges we are having with the harsh (global) economic environment," he said.
He said efforts are in the pipeline to boost the tourism sector as the island's engine economy with more tourism products and icons to be promoted and created.
Among the key areas to be promoted are the shipwreck dive sites and international sea sports events.
Member of Parliament for Labuan Datuk Rozman Isli said a number of tourism development projects are to be implemented in the future to woo tourists into the island.
"We will continue to improve tourism facilities and accessibility, and these include the construction of jetties at several islands," he said.
Dorset Grand Hotel Labuan general manager Susan Carlos said the hotel registered improved occupancy rate early this year, with a big chunk from China.
"We are optimistic with the government's support and strategies, the island's tourism sector will improve benefiting the stakeholders and the hoteliers," she said.