KUALA LUMPUR: The tourism, arts and culture ministry is targeting visitor arrival of 16.1 million and a revenue of RM49.2 billion this year.
Its minister Tiong King Sing said that in order to achieve the targets, the ministry had requested for allocations from the finance ministry to improve the promotion and image of the country’s tourism products.
“We have asked for the finance ministry’s help to enable us to focus on markets involving Asean countries, the Middle East, China, India and also Europe, subject to Budget 2023,” he said when winding up the debate session on his ministry’s motion of thanks for the royal address in the Dewan Rakyat.
“We will also try to make it easier for foreign tourists to travel to Malaysia including implementing visas on arrival, multiple entry visas, e-visas and transit visas.”
He said the ministry would also collaborate with the finance, home, economy and transport ministries to boost the tourism sector.
Tiong said this included improving connectivity to tourism hotspots and increasing the capacity of international flights.
“Currently, we have 720,000 seats, so we will discuss with the relevant parties to request an increase in the flight schedules or have charter flights from the second-tier cities,” he said.
Apart from ensuring tourism attractions in the country are well maintained, he said the ministry would also work towards creating new tourism products in addition to providing adequate allocations for stakeholders.
He said that ecotourism products and rural tourism attractions – such as homestays and handicraft products – would be further promoted for the benefit of rural entrepreneurs.