Be grateful for aid already given, minister tells Sarawak tourism players asking for more

Sarawak Tourism Minister Abdul Karim Rahman Hamzah.

KUCHING: A Sarawak minister has criticised local tourism players in the state for appealing for more help from the state government as the industry attempts to recover from the Covid-19 pandemic.

State Tourism Minister Abdul Karim Rahman Hamzah said some tourism players in Sarawak had been voicing discontent with the assistance already provided by the government.

“We cannot look at tourism as the only industry to assist,” he said at an event with the tourism, arts and culture ministry yesterday.

“We are trying our best to help. We have to look at the issue from the bigger picture.”

With the reopening of domestic tourism, he added, the state government had come up with several strategies to assist the industry’s recovery.

He said these included assisting tourism players with a RM1 million visitors incentive package, providing up-skilling and capacity building for industry players, diversifying the industry and leveraging the e-commerce platform.

He also spoke of boosting the industry’s digital capacity through a RM250,000 online tourism ecosystem fund; enhancing air, sea and land connectivity and accessibility; and establishing training centres for art and handicrafts.

He said the state government had also formed a Sarawak Economic Action Council to set the direction of the state’s economic development until 2030, including for tourism.

“If you (local industry players) are asking for more assistance and complaining about everything given to you, saying it is insufficient, then what is good enough for you?” he said.

“If you’re not happy, then you should leave this industry and look for another one.”

Adding that the country was transitioning to the new normal, he said industry players in the state should be grateful for the assistance provided so far.


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