Monday, 29 July 2019

Tak sangka menang RM70,000

Yahaya (empat dari kanan) bergambar bersama pemenang tempat pertama hingga ketiga Tourism Malaysia Surfcasting Tour A Journey To Visit Malaysia 2020 di Marina Island semalam.

LUMUT - Seorang pekerja kilang tidak menyangka minat memancing membawa tuah apabila dinobatkan juara dalam Tourism Malaysia Surfcasting Tour A Journey To Visit Malaysia 2020 yang berlangsung di Marina Island di sini semalam.

Hanizan Rahidin, 43, dari Parit Buntar, Perak tidak menyangka ikan bawal pinang seberat 2.70 kilogram yang mengena umpannya membolehkan dia membawa pulang hadiah utama berupa wang tunai RM70,000.

Bagi Hanizan, kemenangannya itu memang tidak disangka-sangka kerana dia menyertai pertandingan memancing berkenaan sekadar untuk bersuka-ria dan meluangkan masa hujung minggu bersama rakan-rakan lain.

“Saya tak tahu nak cakap macam mana perasaan saya, sampai sekarang saya masih terkejut, menggeletar kerana memenangi wang tunai RM70,000.

“Saya anggap ini rezeki kami sekeluarga dan saya akan gunakannya sebaik mungkin,” katanya kepada Sinar Harian selepas pertandingan berkenaan di Marina Island semalam.

Sementara itu, Ahli Dewan Undangan Negeri (ADUN) Pasir Panjang, Yahaya Mat Nor yang turut hadir pada program berkenaan menyifatkan penganjuran Tourism Malaysia Surfcasting Tour A Journey To Visit Malaysia 2020 di Marina Island merupakan langkah bijak memandangkan ia membantu mempromosikan Lumut sebagai kawasan pelancongan secara tidak langsung.

“Sambutan juga sangat menggalakkan kerana menerusi penganjuran pertandingan peringkat kebangsaan ini ia disertai oleh peserta daripada pelbagai negeri. Ia turut membantu penduduk setempat menambah pendapatan dengan berniaga.

“Saya berharap Tourism Malaysia dapat menganjurkan lagi pertandingan seumpama ini di daerah Manjung pada masa akan datang untuk sama-sama membantu menjadikan daerah ini sebagai destinasi pelancongan,” katanya.

Bagi Naib Presiden Kelab Rekreasi Tourism Malaysia, Mohd Amirul Rizal Abdul Halim, pemilihan Marina Island sebagai salah satu daripada 10 lokasi pertandingan memancing di dalam negara ini adalah berdasarkan potensi yang terdapat di sini.

“Kami memilih lokasi yang berpotensi untuk dimajukan sebagai lokasi pelancongan domestik misalnya Marina Island.

“Ini kerana lokasi seperti ini tidak ramai yang tahu tentang kewujudannya sedangkan lokasinya sangat menarik dan mempunyai pelbagai kemudahan untuk pengunjung,” katanya.

Seramai 1,582 peserta dalam pelbagai negeri mengambil bahagian dalam Tourism Malaysia Surfcasting Tour A Journey To Visit Malaysia 2020 di Marina Island yang menawarkan hadiah keseluruhan bernilai lebih RM130,000 kepada kaki pancing yang menyertainya.

Acara yang bermula jam 8.30 pagi sehingga jam 2 petang turut memberi tuah kepada seorang nelayan dari Pulau Pangkor, Aswad Ali yang meraih tempat kedua dan membawa pulang wang tunai RM12,000.


Tempat ketiga pula dimenangi oleh anggota polis, Mohd Hafiz Othman 36, yang turut berkongsi cabaran beliau untuk menyertai pertandingan terbabit apabila motosikal dinaikinya pancit ketika dalam perjalanan ke Lumut dari Alor Setar, Kedah.
-Sinar Harian.

Genting Malaysia settles theme park battles with Fox and Disney

A rendering of the theme park

Genting Malaysia, Twentieth Century Fox Group of companies and The Walt Disney Company have reached a settlement regarding a dispute over a Fox-branded theme park in Genting Highlands.

Under the settlement agreement, Genting Malaysia has been granted a license to use certain Fox intellectual properties. The company is currently updating its development and construction plans to complete the outdoor theme park utilising both Fox and non-Fox intellectual properties. The outdoor theme park will also be renamed.

This is part of the restated memorandum of agreement, Genting Malaysia said in a Bursa Malaysia filing last Thursday.

“The settlement will serve as a big boost to investors’ confidence on future earnings, which would otherwise be clouded by the litigation. In our opinion, the long-term positive implication is much more important than the US$1billion counterclaim against the defendants,” said the group.

The Malaysian casino operator took action against both Disney and Fox in November last year, alleging that the Hollywood pair failed to honour a 2013 deal to license intellectual property for the park outside Kuala Lumpur.

The planned reopening of the outdoor theme park is music to the ears of inbound players, as the repeated delays and uncertainty surrounding the Fox-branded theme park have affected promotion plans of Genting Highlands in overseas markets.

Uzaidi Udanis, Malaysian Inbound Tourism Association president, said: “It will be easier for our overseas counterparts to convince their clients who have been to Malaysia before to revisit the country. Getting repeat visitors to revisit the country and see new destinations and experience new products is a less expensive process as compared with finding new tourists, which involves more advertising and marketing. The theme park will also attract more business event visitors as Genting also has big convention facilities.”


Arokia Das, director, Luxury Tours Malaysia commented: We had earlier forecasted a minimum 30 per cent increase from Asian markets because of the planned opening of Twentieth Century Fox World Theme Park. Now we project the same with the opening of the new theme park, even though it will not be a full Fox theme park.”
-TTG Asia.
https://www.rwgenting.com/

Malaysia Airlines and Dorak Holdings Sign Agreement for Charter Services between Kuala Lumpur and Istanbul


Istanbul, 27 July 2019: Malaysia Airlines, yesterday signed a three-month agreement with Dorak Holdings, one of Turkish’s most prominent tourism players to provide charter flights between Kuala Lumpur and Istanbul’s Sabiha Gokcen International Airport from October until December 2019.

The agreement will see the airline operating three times weekly charter flights utilizing its Airbus 330 aircraft.

Malaysia Airlines’ A330 aircraft comes with 287 seats comprising of 19 seats in Business Class and 268 seats in Economy Class.

The agreement was signed between Hazman Hilmi Sallahuddin, member of the senior management team of Malaysia Airlines and Ahmet Serdar Körükçü, Chairman of the Board, Dorak Holdings.


Malaysia Airlines Group Chief Executive Officer, Captain Izham Ismail said, “We are delighted to enter into the agreement with Dorak Holdings to offer charter services between Kuala Lumpur and Istanbul. With this agreement, Malaysia Airlines will be the first Malaysian carrier to land in Istanbul Sabiha Gokcen International Airport, since Malaysia Airports Holdings Berhad (MAHB) acquired the airport in 2015. As the national carrier of Malaysia, we are the first touch point of Malaysia, and the first touch point for travellers to experience Malaysian Hospitality. We hope that through this agreement, we are able to promote more of Malaysia to Turkey at the same time, to attract new markets to visit Malaysia.”
-Malaysia Airlines.
www.malaysiaairlines.com

Sunday, 28 July 2019

Indonesia sumbang RM2.8 billion untuk industri pelancongan Malaysia


JAKARTA, 28 Julai (Bernama) -- Pelancong Indonesia ke Malaysia berbelanja RM2.83 bilion sepanjang tahun 2018, menjadi pelancong asing ketiga terbesar menyumbang kepada industri pelancongan Malaysia selepas pelancong Singapura dan China.

Pengarah Tourism Malaysia di Indonesia, Roslan Othman berkata pihaknya kini memfokuskan promosi hebat untuk menarik lebih ramai pelancong Indonesia ke Malaysia menerusi pelbagai program menarik.

Satu daripadanya adalah program " Miss Sophia: Shopping Hunt", yang meskipun baharu buat rakyat Indonesia, namun dilihat berpotensi besar menjadi tarikan baharu kepada warga Indonesia.

Sejumlah 44 pasukan menyertai program "Miss Sophia: Shopping Hunt: Road to Malaysia" yang diadakan di Kompleks Membeli belah Kota Kasablanka di Jakarta hari ini.

"Program Shopping Hunt ini merupakan sesuatu yang baharu, dan pertama kali diperkenalkan di Jakarta, dan mendapat sambutan hebat.

"Pemenang program ini akan menjadi wakil rasmi Indonesia, yang ditaja sepenuhnya oleh Tourism Malaysia untuk menyertai program Miss Sophia: Shopping Hunt 3.0 yang akan diadakan di Kuala Lumpur pada 15 Sept ini," katanya.

Beliau berkata dijangkakan 200 peserta dari Indonesia akan menyertai program di Kuala Lumpur nanti.

"Pemain-pemain industri pelancongan di Malaysia perlu menjadikan Indonesia sebagai pasaran utama.

"Pada tahun lepas, pelancong Indonesia adalah penyumbang ketiga terbesar untuk industri pelancongan Malaysia iaitu RM2.83 bilion selepas Singapura (RM6.17 bilion) dan China(RM3.7 bilion).

"Sasaran pelancong Indonesia ke Malaysia tahun ini adalah 3.6 juta dan bagi tahun depan, bersempena Tahun Melawat Malaysia 2020 adalah 4 juta pelancong," katanya.
-bernama.

Saturday, 27 July 2019

Four million Indonesian tourists expected in 2020


JAKARTA, July 27 (Bernama) -- An estimated four million Indonesian tourists are expected to visit Malaysia in conjunction with Visit Malaysia 2020, according to Tourism Malaysia.

The agency’s director in Indonesia, Roslan Othman, said Indonesia was viewed as a major market for Malaysian tourism, with about 30 million visitors targeted as a whole for 2020.

Speaking at a ceremony to introduce the Visit Malaysia 2020 logo to about 50 tour agents in Indonesia here, he said Tourism Malaysia was working with tour agents in Indonesia to achieve the targeted four million arrivals, and will also hold promotional events in other Indonesian cities.

He added that the agency's target for Indonesian visitors in 2019 was 3.4 million, and up to May this year, about 1.5 million of the target had been achieved.
-bernama.

Festival Sayangi Lahad Datu 2019 @ Kompleks Sukan, Lahad Datu, Sabah ( 2 ~ 4 Ogos 2019 )

-JKKN.

Friday, 26 July 2019

Mahathir visits Turkish airport owned by MAHB


ISTANBUL, July 26 (Bernama) -- Malaysian Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad Friday visited the Istanbul Sabiha Gokcen International Airport (ISGIA) here which is wholly-owned by Malaysia Airports Holdings Berhad (MAHB).
Dr Mahathir, who arrived at the airport from the Turkish capital city of Ankara, spent about an hour looking at the operation of the airport, located about 45 km from the city centre.
He was accompanied by his wife, Tun Dr Siti Hasmah Mohd Ali.
Dr Mahathir and Dr Siti Hasmah were received upon arrival by Khazanah Nasional Berhad managing director Datuk Shahril Ridza Ridzuan; MAHB chairman Tan Sri Zainun Ali and MAHB Group CEO Raja Azmi Raja Nazuddin.
Also present were Malaysian Foreign Minister Datuk Saifuddin Abdullah, Defence Minister Mohamad Sabu, Minister of International Trade and Industry Datuk Ignatius Darell Leiking, Foreign Ministry secretary-general Datuk Seri Muhammad Shahrul Ikram Yaakob and Turkish Ambassador to Malaysia Merve Kavakci.
Dr Mahathir was briefed by Raja Azmi on the history of the full acquisition of the airport by MAHB in 2014, its achievements and development as well as the future plans.
Raja Azmi, in his briefing, said the airport handles 41 million passengers annually and can increase its capacity to 60 million when it has a new runway. He said Malaysia, through MAHB, is the only ASEAN country that owns an airport in Europe. The airport handles 53 airlines flying to 131 international destinations and 41 domestic destinations, he said.
The prime minister then toured the airport.
Opened in January 2001, Sabiha Gokcen is the second-largest and busiest airport in Turkey and boasts the world's busiest single runway and terminal. It is also the 12th busiest airport in Europe.
Dr Mahathir arrived in Ankara on Wednesday for a four-day official visit to Turkey.
A busy schedule awaits the 94-year-old Dr Mahathir here Friday, with the events including a ‘Captains of Industry’ roundtable discussion and hi-tea with the Malaysian diaspora.
-bernama.

Tourism players, public urged to promote VMY2020 logo

Tourism Malaysia chairman, Datuk Ahmad Shah Hussein Tambakau (fifth from left) MATTA president, Datuk KL Tan (fifth from right), take group picture during the Tourism Malaysia Travel Fair in Kota Kinabalu. NSTP/Edmund Samunting
KOTA KINABALU: Tourism industry players and the public are urged to promote the Visit Malaysia 2020 logo via their social media accounts.

Tourism, Arts and Culture Minister Datuk Mohamaddin Ketapi said the logo, which was launched by Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad on Monday, was representative of the government’s aim to draw 30 million international tourists with RM100 billion tourism receipts next year.

“The responsibility of developing the the tourism industry lies not just on the ministry.

“We need each other to achieve the target to make Malaysia a premium destination.

“Let us accept the challenge by our prime minister and ensure the success of the programme,” said Mohamaddin.

His speech was read out by Tourism Malaysia chairman Datuk Ahmad Shah Hussein Tambakau at the launch of the three-day Tourism Malaysia Travel Fair at a shopping mall here.

Mohamaddin said the travel fair, which is based on the B2C or “business to consumers” concept, featured 40 industry players offering their products for locals.

“I believe the event will boost the growth of the domestic tourism sector and generate more income for the nation.

“This (domestic) sector will be able to assist the country’s tourism industry in the event of challenges of the global scale which could affect the movement of international tourists to Malaysia,” he said.
-NST Online.

Selangor International Indigenous Arts Festival 2019 @ Taman Botani Negara, Shah Alam ( 3 ~ 4 August 2019 )

Date: 3 ~ 4 August 2019

Time: 10 am ~ 5 pm

Venue: Taman Botani Negara, Shah Alam, Selangor

Performances from:-
Malaysia (Mahmeri, Seletar & Temuan)
Guinea
Sri Lanka
South Korea
Indonesia

-Tourism Selangor.

Thursday, 25 July 2019

Endurance World Championship & World Touring Car Cup 2019 @ Sepang International Circuit ( 13 ~ 15 December 2019 )


The date is set for a spectacular and ground-breaking festival of motorsport in Malaysia. The FIA World Touring Car Cup and the FIM Endurance World Championship has been made exclusive and ONE-OF-A KIND creating history for Malaysia as SIC host TWO WORLD CHAMPIONSHIPS TOGETHER IN ONE WEEKEND.
 
The FIA World Touring Car Cup (FIA WTCR) is the highest class of competition for touring cars. The Malaysian round will be the grand finale of the 10 global rounds this season. The race will see 26 full season entries with 8 different car manufacturers.

The FIM Endurance World Championship (FIM EWC) is the premier worldwide endurance motorcycle racing championship. The Sepang round named the 8 Hour of Sepang will see at least 20 Japanese and 10 Asian teams competing as it will be the qualifying round to the legendary Suzuka 8 Hours in 2020. 
 
Both races will take place until sunset and the chequered flag will be waived under the new SIC Circuit Lights.

Come and witness these exciting world-class championships as they make their #RoadToMalaysia.
One ticket for two world championships!
-Sepang Circuit.
https://www.sepangcircuit.com/ticketing/wtcr-ewc/wtcr-ewc  

Malaysia introduces recognition award for Muslim-Friendly Accommodation


PUTRAJAYA, July 24 (Bernama) -- Malaysia is the first country to introduce the Muslim-Friendly Tourism Accommodation Recognition in an effort to attract world Muslim travellers who are expected to reach 230 million by 2026.

Tourism, Arts and Culture Minister Datuk Mohamaddin Ketapi said recognition through the Islamic Tourism Centre, an agency under his ministry, is essential to dispel the doubts of Muslims to stay and perform prayers at the premises.

"There is a high demand from West Asian travellers for Muslim friendly accommodation, even hotels in non-Muslim countries are also trying to get Muslim-friendly recognition to attract more tourists," he told reporters after launching the recognition here today.

Meanwhile, Islamic Tourism Centre director-general Datuk Seri Abdul Khani Daud said the recognition was divided into three categories namely platinum, gold and silver.

To achieve platinum status, accommodation needs to meet the required seven Muslim-friendly conditions; while gold needs to meet five conditions and for silver, four conditions.

Among the conditions are that hotels need to provide information on mosque locations, Muslim-friendly tourist spots, provide halal food and beverages at restaurants, provide clear qibla/prayer direction and provide Al-Quran and prayer mat in accommodation.

Other conditions include the separation of pool facilities and gymnasium for women and men respectively or provide a special time schedule for Muslim women to use the facility, he said.

Abdul Khani said so far, 12 hotels had gained recognition with seven certified with platinum, four gold and one silver.

"For now the application for the recognition can be made free of charge," he said.
-bernama.

Malaysia Fest 2019 @ Singapore Expo ( 25 ~ 28 July 2019 )


Since 2016, Malaysia Fest, organised by MegaXpress International Pte Ltd, has been popular in selling Malaysian food and products by established Malaysian Exhibitors.

This year, Tourism Malaysia will be participating during the 4 Days event as part of the Visit Malaysia 2020 promotional campaign and to showcase Malaysia's tourism products to consumers.
-Malaysia Fest 2019 fb.

Putrajaya International Islamic Arts & Culture Festival 2019 @ Kompleks Perbadanan Putrajaya ( 25 ~ 28 July 2019 )

The Putrajaya International Islamic Arts and Cultural Festival (PIIACUF) is aimed at pioneering the values of Islam through the perspective of a moderate society where arts and culture takes center stage in delivering the messages of Islam to the world.

Islam as a way of life had its fair share in shaping the world through the ages. From the best of philosophers, thinkers, artists and leaders, PIIACUF will exhibit some of the finest works of Islam through the organizing of exhibition, seminars, symposiums, music and arts.

Themed PIIACUF takes its visitors through a journey of enlightenment Islamic arts and culture with focus on Wonders Of Islamic World. The appreciation towards past achievements and success of the Muslim world then will surely open a new pandora of thoughts for the future of Islam and Muslim in a modern world.

The event promises the best of Islamic Arts & Culture under one roof and surely it will be an event not to be missed. Join us for this wonderful journey of appreciation at Putrajaya International Islamic Arts & Cultural Festival 2019.
-Putrajaya International Islamic Arts & Culture Festival fb

Wednesday, 24 July 2019

Tourism Malaysia Travel Fair 2019 @ Suria Sabah ( 25 ~ 27 July 2019 )

-Tourism Malaysia Sabah.

Launch of Visit Johor 2020 logo and mascot next month

Liow (second from right) visiting one of the booths at the Malaysia International Travel Mart (MITM) Travel Fair 2019 while Ang (right) looks on.

JOHOR BARU: The state government is expected to unveil its logo and mascot design for Visit Johor 2020 next month.

State tourism, women, family and community development committee chairman Liow Cai Tung said the logo and mascot were picked from a competition, which received good public response.

“In April this year, Tourism Johor conducted a logo design, mascot design and photography competition, which attracted about 100 entries from all over Malaysia.

“We will choose the logo and designs from the entries and unveil it during the soft launch of Visit Johor 2020 in August,” she said, adding that winners of the competition would also be announced during the soft launch.

She added that some 20 festivals at 20 destinations in Johor would also be unveiled during the launch in an effort to promote Visit Johor 2020.

Liow also said that the state government had allocated some RM3.67mil to carry out promotional efforts in 2019.

“Among the continuous programmes and activities carried 
out via Tourism Johor are engagement and briefing sessions for front liners and tourism players, heritage tour presentations, as well as tourism missions to international travel fairs such as the Asian Tourism Forum in Vietnam and World Travel Mart in London,” she said.

On the event, Liow hopes that the travel fair here would allow the public to know more about attractive travel packages made available for them.

MCTA Johor Chapter chairman Kelvin Ang said that there were some 160 booths and 25 exhibitors at the travel fair here.

“We hope that the public can benefit from the travel fair here and get their hands on attractive tour packages for their next holidays.

“Apart from attractive tour packages, visitors can also look out for clothes, food and other interesting items from all over the world during the fair,” he said.
-thestar online.

Tuesday, 23 July 2019

Visit Malaysia campaign launched in major Indian cities


NEW DELHI, July 22 (Bernama) -- Tourism Malaysia launched its ‘Visit Malaysia 2020’ campaign in major Indian cities on Monday to boost visitor arrivals from a key source market.

Thirty-seven Malaysian travel industry players, including nine hotels, three airlines and many tour operators, are participating in the July 22-25 campaign in Amritsar, Mumbai and Hyderabad.

Malaysia received 295,609 tourists from India between January and May this year, posting an increase of 15.5 per cent over the same period last year.

The target for 2019 is 728,000 tourists from India.

Sulaiman Suip, director of Tourism Malaysia in Delhi, launched the three-city roadshow in the northern Indian city of Amritsar.

He said the opening of new attractions such as the Desaru Coast beach holiday destination in Johor and the Sea Life marine attraction at Legoland Malaysia Resort will offer more choices to Indian tourists.

"Malaysia has a vast range of attractions to appeal to every segment, be it shoppers, nature lovers, honeymooners or family tourists. To publicise them better, we have increased our focus on digital campaigns and social media platforms," Sulaiman said.

Tourism Malaysia's offices in Mumbai, Delhi and Chennai are growing their engagements with local travel companies for various joint promotion campaigns.
-bernama.

Make Visit Malaysia 2020 a national mission - Mahathir


PUTRAJAYA, July 22 (Bernama) -- Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad has called on Malaysians to make the ‘Visit Malaysia 2020’ tourism promotion a national mission by telling and sharing the beauty, peace and wonders of the country.

He said everyone had a role to play in the Visit Malaysia 2020 campaign where the government would ensure that the campaign becomes a catalyst for achieving targets set under the Malaysia Tourism Transformation Plan.

“Our hospitality must not be merely a slogan but translated into the nature and culture of our people.

“The beauty of a place will attract but the hospitality will make people stay and return,” he said at the launch of the Visit Malaysia 2020 campaign logo at the KL International Airport (KLIA) here today.

Also present was Tourism, Arts and Culture Minister Datuk Mohamaddin Ketapi.

Dr Mahathir said tourism is one of the most important sectors to ensure the country’s economic and service sector growth as it is not only able to generate income but also provide employment.

He said the Visit Malaysia 2020 campaign is an opportunity as well as a challenge for the country to attract record numbers of visitors to Malaysia and make the country a destination of choice for leisure and business tourists.

“It is hoped that the Visit Malaysia 2020 campaign will succeed in its target of 30 million international tourist arrivals and RM100 billion tourist receipts,” he said.

Dr Mahathir said increasing flight connectivity from other destinations to Malaysia is one of the initiatives to boost arrivals into Malaysia and meet the campaign targets.

“If we have better air accessibility connecting other cities with Malaysia, we will be able to receive many more tourists,” he said.

“Hence, we need to connect and reach out to “high yield” markets which are Malaysia’s target markets for this campaign, namely ASEAN, China, India, the United Kingdom and Germany,” he said.

Dr Mahathir said the success of the Visit Malaysia 2020 campaign also depends largely on effective promotion.

The tourism sector needs to move in tandem with digital transformation emphasising digital marketing using various social media platforms if the industry is to remain competitive, he said.

Dr Mahathir said Malaysians have to realise that the success of the campaign would benefit everyone as spillovers from the tourist industry spread to all walks and manners of other businesses and industries.

“I am indeed pleased when informed that this national project saw the participation of various levels and sectors, ministries, agencies, departments, non-governmental organisations, the private sector and tourism industry players themselves,” he said.

Dr Mahathir said the Visit Malaysia 2020 campaign focuses on ecotourism, arts and culture, befitting the National Ecotourism Plan 2016-2025 and the National Culture Policy which places ecotourism, arts and culture as the main focus and the path forward in the development of the tourism industry in Malaysia.

“Through this campaign, we will welcome visitors from all over the world to experience the uniqueness and beauty of Malaysia’s ecotourism attractions, including our rainforests, mountains, islands and beaches.

“At the same time, visitors will have the opportunity to immerse themselves in our diverse culture, arts, heritage and history,” he said, adding that it is in line with the campaign’s promotional theme, “Culture, Nature and its People”.

Dr Mahathir said Malaysia’s tourism industry has continued to grow from strength to strength and the tourism sector showed impressive performance recently.

For the first five months of this year, tourist arrivals recorded a growth of 4.8 per cent with 10.95 million tourist arrivals compared with 10.45 million tourist arrivals in the corresponding period last year, he said.

The first-quarter performance of this year also showed growth in tourism revenue which reached RM21.4 billion, a surge of 16.9 per cent compared to the same period the year before, he said.

Last year, some 25.8 million tourists visited Malaysia, and Malaysia secured 15th place among countries with the highest number of tourist arrivals, he said.

A total of 78.2 million domestic tourists were recorded in 2018 with a growth of 10.9 per cent from the previous year, while domestic tourism expenditure registered a growth of 11.7 per cent in 2018 with RM60.4 billion, he said.

Dr Mahathir said the number of employees engaged in the tourism industry has also increased, to 3.4 million in 2017 from 1.5 million in 2005, while the number of people employed in the tourism industry made up 23.2 per cent of the total labour force.

In 2017, the industry contributed 14.9 per cent to the national economy compared to 10.4 per cent in 2005, he said.

“Malaysia ranked No. 21 among countries with the highest tourism revenue, bringing in RM84.1 billion in tourism revenue in 2018 as stated in the United Nations World Tourism Organisation (UNWTO) in its Barometer Report published in May 2019,” he said.
-bernama.

Monday, 22 July 2019

Malaysia Prime Minister Launches VISIT MALAYSIA 2020 Campaign Logo


SEPANG, 22 JULY 2019: YAB Tun Dr. Mahathir Mohamad, Prime Minister of Malaysia, has officially launched the Visit Malaysia 2020 campaign logo today at Kuala Lumpur International Airport simultaneously calling upon all Malaysians to embrace the campaign as a national mission to ensure its success.

The campaign logo, part of the campaign’s marketing and promotional efforts, features various recognisable icons of Malaysia such as the hornbill, the bunga raya (hibiscus), the wild fern and colours of the Malaysian flag. Together, they represent the diversity of Malaysia’s culture, heritage, flora and fauna as well as experiences offered as a holiday destination.

The winning entry by Alfred Phua Hong Fook, a graphic designer, was chosen from hundreds of submissions from all over Malaysia during the competition period earlier this year.

YAB Tun Dr. Mahathir also witnessed the exchange of Memorandum of Joint Promotion ceremony between Tourism Malaysia and various parties, namely Malaysia Airlines, AirAsia, Firefly, Malindo Air, Malaysia Airports Holdings Berhad and Sharp (M) Electronics Sdn. Bhd. This was followed by the unveiling of the Visit Malaysia 2020 aircraft livery on the four airlines.

The year 2020 has been designated as Visit Malaysia 2020 with targets of achieving 30 million international tourist arrivals and RM100 billion tourist receipts. The focus of the campaign is on ecotourism, arts and culture.

To ensure the campaign’s success, Tourism Malaysia has partnered with several private sector corporations such as Sharp (M) Electronics Sdn. Bhd., Malaysia Airlines, AirAsia, Firefly, Malindo Air and Malaysia Airports Holdings Berhad, to implement marketing and promotional activities utilizing their local and international media platforms.

In addition, a RM5 million fund called GAMELAN Malaysia has been made available to provide financial support to Malaysian tourism industry players who organize marketing and promotional activities to promote Malaysia as a business and leisure destination.

To enhance air connectivity and bring in more passengers into Malaysia, Tourism Malaysia and Malaysia Airports Holdings Berhad have partnered with various international airlines such as Condor Air, Air Arabia and Busan Air in launching new routes into Malaysia from key international destinations.

Furthermore, Visa on Arrival facilities have been expanded to 13 entry points in Malaysia, ensuring a hassle-free entry for China and India nationals, two of the fastest growing outbound tourist markets in the world.

In 2018, Malaysia welcomed a total of 25.8 million international tourists, while for the first five months of this year, international tourist arrivals have reached a total of 10,954,014 tourists, recording a growth of +4.8% compared to the same period last year.
-Tourism Malaysia.

MOTAC wants to list Balik Pulau Festival in Visit Malaysia calendar 2020


BALIK PULAU, July 21 (Bernama) - The Ministry of Tourism, Arts and Culture (MOTAC) will consider listing the Balik Pulau Festival in the Visit Malaysia Year 2020 calendar.

Its Deputy Minister, Muhammad Bakhtiar Wan Chik, said the first Balik Pulau Festival which ended today was a great success.

"Despite being the first time it was held, we received more than 15,000 visitors in three days,” he told reporters after the closing ceremony of the festival here today.

The ceremony was officiated by Penang Governor Tun Abdul Rahman Abbas at the compound of Balik Pulau Sports Complex.

"We will improve the festival further next year. We will add more arts and culture elements to expose the younger generation to the wealth of Malaysian arts and culture,” said Muhammad Bakhtiar, who is also Balik Pulau MP.

"Tun Abdul Rahman Abbas also suggested for the upcoming festival to be held during the durian season as Balik Pulau is famous for durians," he said.
-bernama.

Tourism Malaysia harnessing power of digital marketing for VM2020

Datuk Musa Yusof

KUCHING, July 20 (Bernama) -- Tourism Malaysia is harnessing the power of digital marketing to help it achieve its target of 30 million tourist arrivals for Visit Malaysia 2020 next year.

Tourism Malaysia director-general, Datuk Musa Yusof, said the campaign focus is a dedicated VM2020 website and the use of hashtags like #VisitMalaysia2020, #VM2020 and #MalaysiaTrulyAsia.

“We are ready to launch VM2020 and making every effort to reach out to the world with the help of the web," he said at an ‘Ilek-Ilek Program’ in Jalan Rubber attended by the media, YouTubers and social media influencers today.

He said Tourism Malaysia is also leveraging on its solid social media presence with 3.3 million Facebook followers, about 73,000 Instagram followers, 422,489 Twitter followers and 45.6 million YouTube views up till June 20 this year.

Aside from this, four Tourism Malaysia Mega Familiarisation (Mega Fam) programmes were held since the beginning of the year for the international press, including social media influencers and travel agents to experience Malaysia first-hand.

“The Mega Fam programme has been one of the most effective marketing strategies for Tourism Malaysia,” Musa said.

He added that altogether there were 86 participants and that 80 who took part from 10 countries “yielded a return on investment amounting to RM3.7 million in publicity value through articles, documentaries and social media publicity”.

On tourist arrival data, Musa said: “International tourist arrivals from January to May this year was 10,954,014 which is a 4.8 percent growth from 10,545,447 arrivals during the same period in 2018.

"Short- (ASEAN) and medium-haul markets were the strong performers, with an increment of 4.7 per cent and 7.6 per cent respectively,” he said.
-bernama.

Thursday, 18 July 2019

SIC gears up for 20th MotoGP in November

Tan Sri Mohamed Azman Yahya

KUALA LUMPUR, July 16 (Bernama) -- The Sepang International Circuit (SIC) is fully geared up to host the 20th edition of the Malaysia Motorcycle Grand Prix (MotoGP) from Nov 1-3, to ensure a special and memorable event for fans and riders alike.

Since the inaugural edition at the 5.543km track in 1999 - the brainchild of Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad – the event has matured into a showpiece of motor racing in the South East Asia region.

Besides the 20th anniversary, this year’s event also coincides the 10th year of Shell’s title sponsorship for the Malaysia GP and 70th anniversary of the MotoGP, which started in January 1949 with events consisting of the Isle of Man TT, Swiss GP, Dutch TT, Belgian GP, Ulster GP and the GP of Nations at Monza.

SIC chairman Tan Sri Azman Yahya said the historic moment was bound to be a special occasion as SIC had worked hard over the years to ensure the race is of the highest quality.

“It will be such a great honour to witness the 20th anniversary of the Malaysian GP this year – and also the 70th anniversary of the MotoGP. For 20 years, we have worked hard to ensure that the quality of the Malaysia GP is at the highest level and we have proven that with our success as the Best Grand Prix in 2012 and 2017 as awarded by the Grand Prix Commission.

“I'm grateful to have a loyal partner like Shell, who has been with us since 2009. We have seen waves of success during the 10 years together and I thank you for that,” he said during the official launch of the Shell Malaysia MotoGP here tonight.

With a steady growth since 2010, the event has blossomed into a spectacular affair for two-wheel fans, selling out year after year, where in 2018, the Malaysia MotoGP registered a record turnout of 169,827 spectators for the three-day event.

Over the years, MotoGP has served as a platform to develop Malaysian talents to compete in world-class championships with the likes of Shahrol Yuzy, Zulfahmi Khairuddin, Adam Norrodin and Azlan Shah Kamaruzaman, to name a few.

Meanwhile, Shell Malaysia chairman Datuk Iain Lo said the oil and gas company is excited to celebrate its long-standing involvement in world motorcycle racing with all motorsports enthusiasts through its collaboration with SIC.

At the same event, SIC and Shell Malaysia also announced special off-track activities for fans, as two winners will have the chance to win a fully paid trip to watch the Shell Malaysia MotoGP with exclusive behind-the-scene experience through the MalaysianGP Superfan Contest.

Among the highlights for this year will be a live viewing session in Kuantan, first time outside Klang Valley, to extend its excitement to a larger group of fans and the return of Shell Hillstand, the exclusive viewing area at the circuit to provide motorsports enthusiasts an opportunity to enjoy differentiated experience including family-friendly activities and a variety of food and beverages.

Aimed at providing a bigger and better Malaysia MotoGP experience, fans will have the chance to support their favourite riders in action as SIC All Stars showcasing talented MotoGP riders will take on Team Media FC at the National Stadium in Bukit Jalil.

Fans also will have the chance to get up close and personal with top riders like defending champion Marc Marquez, seven-time champion Valentino Rossi, Jorge Lorenzo as well as national rider Hafizh Syahrin Abdullah, among others, during the two-day rider's autograph session and fan forum at SIC in early November.

“The hype will be much bigger this year as we have a Malaysian team racing in three different categories of the championship. The Petronas Yamaha Sepang Racing Team just bared their fangs when Fabio Quartararo finished second at the Catalunya GP and with Hafizh and Khairul Idham Pawi on the grid, Malaysians will have more to cheer for.

“Although tickets remain at the same price for the Malaysian GP, there is an addition of 25% entertainment tax imposed by the state government. However, the event remains to be a much-awaited one and tickets are selling fast. I encourage all fans to start getting theirs now before it sells out.

“To ensure a comfortable and convenient experience for the fans, work has also started to fix the roofing of the Main Grandstand and better fittings for the public toilets. We are excited to see the new and improved roof during the race this year,” Azman added.
-bernama.

Duriotourism Kuala Kangsar a must-visit destination for durian lovers


KUALA LUMPUR, July 16 (Bernama) -- Kampung Talang Hulu, which is about three kilometres from the Kuala Kangsar toll plaza, is a must-visit destination for those craving for local fruits, especially durian enthusiasts.

This is because the village is where Malaysia’s first durian-based agrotourism centre, dubbed Duriotourism Kuala Kangsar, is located.

The 50-hectare agrotourism centre was developed by the Malaysian Agricultural Research and Development Institute (MARDI), with 20 hectares of the land being planted with various types of hybrid durians developed by Mardi researchers, including MDUR 78, MDUR 79 and MDUR 88.

Perak MARDI director Daud Endam said the Duriotourism Kuala Kangsar visit package will enable the visitors to hop on a tram for a tour around the farm, while listening to the briefing from the workers on durian cultivation and clones and posing for pictures in a natural fruit farm environment.

They can also learn and have a taste of the hybrid durians as well as MARDI’s special variant of mangosteens called mesta.

Unlike normal mangosteen which has a round shape, mesta is pointy. The flesh is crunchy, but sweeter and not as juicy as normal mangosteen.

MARDI has begun offering two hybrid durians, namely MDUR 78 and MDUR 79 in 1991, and a year later, they introduced MDUR 88, which is a cross between D10 and D24 variants and planted at the agrotourism centre in Kuala Kangsar.

The MDUR 88 has a beautiful golden-yellow colour flesh that is sticky and thick. It also has the best texture of the three and the deepest flavour. The MDUR 88 tree has high yield potential and can produce fruits as early as six years old.

“MARDI is currently focusing on cultivating MDUR 88 on a larger scale and will also involve farmers’ plantation.

“So far, the Johor and Kedah agriculture directors are working closely to realise this effort,” MARDI director-general Datuk Mohammad Roff Mohd Noor said when met at the Perak MARDI Meet-the-Customers Day 2019 at the centre recently.

For only RM50 per person, durian enthusiasts can enjoy all the available fruits at the Duriotourism Kuala Kangsar from 9 am to 6 pm daily. For more information, the public can contact Kuala Kangsar MARDI office at 05-7733030.
-bernama.

Monday, 15 July 2019

Tourism industry expected to generate RM100 billion next year


TUMPAT, July 14 (Bernama) -- Malaysia’s tourism industry is expected to generate RM100 billion in revenue next year.

Ministry of Tourism, Arts and Culture (MOTAC) Datuk Mohamaddin Ketapi said his ministry is confident of achieving its target of 30 million tourist arrivals next year, contributing to the RM100 billion in revenue expected from both international and domestic tourism, compared to a projected revenue of RM92 billion for this year.

“Kelantan is among the states expected to attract a higher number of foreign tourists to Malaysia. A total of 5.5 million tourists are expected to visit Kelantan this year. Tourist arrivals to the state will increase further next year and this will help boost the number of tourists coming to Malaysia,” he said.

He was speaking to reporters after the closing ceremony of the 2019 Kelantan Folk Arts Festival (FKRK) here today.

Also present were Culture and Arts Department (JKKN) director-general Tan Sri Norliza Rofli, Kelantan Culture, Tourism and Heritage Committee chairman Datuk Md Anizam Abd Rahman and Narathiwat deputy governor Patimoh Sadiyamon.

The FKRK introduced in 2017 is one of nine cultural programmes listed in the cultural tourism sector calendar in nine states to highlight unique local cultures as tourism products.

Among the activities held at the FKRK this year were Rebana Ubi, Kertuk and Dikir Barat competitions and performances by the Kelantan Percussion Symphony Orchestra.

Meanwhile, Mohamaddin said his ministry is always open to proposals from state governments in the effort to revive the traditional art forms in their respective states.

“For instance, the Mak Yong cultural performance has been allowed to be continue in Kelantan by mutual agreement. We would like to say thank you to (the) Kelantan (state government) for giving a new breath to Mak Yong, now it can be watched at the Kelantan JKKN Auditorium,” he said.

The PAS (Pan-Malaysian Islamic Party) -led government in Kelantan had previously banned Mak Yong, a dance drama, in the state on the grounds that it had animist and Hindu-Buddhist roots.
-bernama.

Saturday, 13 July 2019

100 performers, 39 music groups from 20 countries at RWMF 2019


KUCHING, July 13 (Bernama) — The long-awaited Rainforest World Music Festival (RWMF) 2019 kicked off yesterday at the Sarawak Culture Village (SCV) with an “over-load” of music and myriad activities for visitors.

The three-day iconic event has attracted 100 performers from 39 music groups involving 20 countries.

According to Sarawak Tourism, Arts, Culture, Youth and Sports Minister Datuk Abdul Karim Rahman Hamzah, this year’s festival features eight new countries or cultures, namely from Nagaland of Northeast India, Bhutan, Canary Islands, the Mauritius, West Kalimantan Indonesia, Jamaica, Estonia as well as the Ainu Culture from Japan.

“The local folks are excited with the staging of this annual festival because it showcases both international folk and indigenous music and songs where we get to share this with others,” he said at a media conference here today.

Abdul Karim said ticket sales for this year are encouraging with good walk-in rates.

“The attendance on the first day of the festival had hit over 6,000 people and this is based on the distribution of wristbands to the people coming into SCV.

“However, we are expecting a much bigger crowd today and thus looking forward to a full house. We are expecting a crowd of 8,000 people, which is also the maximum crowd space capacity that is available here,” he said.

The SCV was divided into multiple sections, including the Ingenious Stage, Theatre Stage, Jungle Stage, Tree Stage and Rainforest Music House, to provide platforms for the performers and artistes to interact with festival-goers.

For this year, the concept of “Responsible Tourism” has been incorporated into RWMF as 20 water dispensing machines have been stationed throughout the festive ground to reduce the usage of plastic water bottles.

“We have also introduced the usage of #UrBins by SPATIVATE and ‘Biji-Biji’ initiatives...creative signage in the festival to create awareness to public with regard to waste management,” he added.
-bernama.

Look at arts as economic building platform


KUALA LUMPUR, July 11 (Bernama) -- The arts field needs to be seen as a platform which is able to compete towards national economic development through the production of various works of local young artists, said Deputy Minister of Tourism, Arts and Culture Muhammad Bakhtiar Wan Chik.

He said that art collections had asset rich potentials which would create new dimensions to become new professional and historical potentials to the nation in future.

‘’This Young Contemporary Award plays an important role in highlighting talented local young artists with the potential to turn our works from various mediums and style in their works.

‘’Since the competition was introduced and has now entered its 25th edition, many artists at the international Biennale and Triennale levels have been successfully turned out,’’ he said in his speech when launching the Young Contemporary Award (BMS19) at Balai Seni Negara here, tonight.

He said that many of the young artists were also successful in building their careers and creating a name for themselves at the local and international levels such as Shamsuddin Wahab, Syafiq Nordin, Syed Fakharuddin who had exhibitions including in New York, Japan, South Korea and China.

"Other than offering professional career experience as young contemporary artists, the art field is also a platform to build international ties and branding Malaysian arts abroad,’’ he said.

According to Bakhtiar, in conjunction with the 2020 Visit Malaysia Year, the organisation of KL Biennale at the Balai Seni Negara was set to attract local and foreign visitors and indirectly turn the arts event into one of the tourism events.

The organisation of BMS19 was also in line with the objective of the ministry to turn out knowledgeable human capitals with skills, creativity and innovation in the tourism and cultural sectors.

A total 168 participations were received and only 44 participants qualified to the final with works themed ‘Bebas’ (Free) via the installation art works including in the form of conventional arts such as painting, printing and sculpting.

At the event, Samsudin Abdul Wahab won the main award and received cash RM30,000 while two more categories contested, namely, special jury award and visitors’ choice award each offered prices of RM7,000 and RM2,000 to the winners.
-bernama.

Friday, 12 July 2019

RM10mil worth of sales expected at Johor MATTA fair


JOHOR BARU: Malaysian Association of Tour and Travel Agents (MATTA) is aiming to net RM10mil in sales during the upcoming Johor MATTA Fair 2019 at Capital City Expo in Tampoi, here.

The fair is from Aug 2 to 4 and will have 150 booths offering a comprehensive range of travel and holiday products from all over Malaysia and the world under one roof.

Matta Johor Chapter in a statement said visitors could expect attractive bargains and great value in all packages offered and air ticket bookings during the three-day fair.

“We have successfully organised 30 fairs in Johor Baru and eight in Batu Pahat since 1999.

It also said that two lucky draws would be held during the fair, one for purchasers and another for visitors.

“For every purchase of RM500 and above, the customer will get a chance to win travel vouchers and air tickets with a total value of RM100,000

“The lucky draw is on Aug 4 at 10pm while for visitors, there will be a daily draw at 9.30pm where 12 air tickets to Thailand will be given away,” it added.

MATTA Johor Chapter is working with Desaru Development Holdings One Sdn Bhd that operates a water theme park, hotels and resorts.

It is also working with Malaysia Airlines which will offer attractive promotional airfares and bargains.


The fair is from 9.30am to 9.30pm, with a RM3 entrance fee for adults and free entry for children below 12 years old.
-thestar online.