Industry players want more promotion for tourism products, services

by ANIS HAZIM / pic source

TOURISM players are once again calling for more active promotion of local tourism products and services to uplift the country’s tourism industry.

Malaysia Tourism Council president Uzaidi Udanis said although Malaysia offers various tourist attractions, products and cultures, it needs greater promotion to publicise the products more widely.

“We are so blessed to have many products, but we have not been promoting them well. If we look at our products, actually we have more products compared to the neighbouring countries,” Uzaidi told The Malaysian Reserve (TMR).

Uzaidi, who is also the Malaysian Inbound Tourism Association president, said Malaysia needs to find ways to promote local products to the international and domestic markets.

“Malaysia has so many agro products and herbs which we can promote, for example by running a festival on these products specifically. We must create a lot of activities and events to market our products,” he said.

Considering the need for intensive promotion, he noted that this will requires fiscal allocations for promotional activities.

“We are not asking the government for free money, but we need their assistance to encourage banks to provide financial aid or loan facilities to tourism operators,” he said.

Moreover, he said Malaysia needs to ramp up innovative tourism vehicles such as recreational vehicles and caravans to provide more unique experiences for tourists.

“We need an allocation from the government or any sort of incentive to create innovative product vehicles.

“There is a huge potential for caravans in Malaysia, where we can become the centre of caravan tourism in Asia,” he added.

Meanwhile, Malaysian Association of Tour and Travel Agents VP (inbound) Ganneesh Rama said Malaysia needs to acknowledge its own products to cater to every tourist visiting the country.

“We cannot promote one product to cater to all the international tourists. For example, the European tourists prefer nature, laidback and adventure vacations so they most likely prefer to stay at a homestay and man-made attractions,” he told TMR.

He said Malaysia also needs to treasure and keep its national parks in pristine conditions to promote eco-tourism.

“It is important to keep our national parks so we can promote them as eco-tourism attractions,” he noted.

Additionally, he said Malaysia should offer light entertainment attractions along the beach or at any local tourist attractions.

“Many tourists went for a holiday to enjoy themselves in a relaxed or chill environment. Some enjoy light entertainment,like music at our tourism attractions, so we should be able to provide this,” he added.

To note, the Ministry of Finance allocated a total of RM1.6 billion for the tourism industry to stay afloat after Covid-19.

On the other hand, Tourism, Arts and Culture (Motac) Minister Datuk Seri Nancy Shukri also calls on the government to prioritise the tourism sector to spur the Malaysian economic rebound.

Nancy said Motac will continue to support the recovery of the tourism sector and assist the industry players in stimulating the market, especially in driving domestic travelling activities.

She also highlighted Malaysia’s need to further improve its tourism infrastructure and offer outstanding services to attract high-yield tourists to Malaysia and to compete with other popular tourist destinations in neighbouring countries.

  • This article first appeared in The Malaysian Reserve weekly print edition