Sabah confident tourist arrivals from China will exceed last year’s 200,000

KOTA KINABALU: Sabah is confident that tourist arrivals from China will exceed last year’s 200,000 despite China’s new tourism law which puts some restrictions on its travellers to overseas tourism destinations.

Sabah Assistant Minister of Tourism, Culture and Enviroment, Datuk Pang Yuk Min, said the new law will not likely affect tourist arrivals from China.

The law, approved in April, came into effect Oct 1. Apart from promoting sustained industry growth, it also covers the rights of outbound travellers in their dealings with Chinese tour companies.

“The outbound tour operators in China are uncomfortable with the new law … they do not know how it is going to be implemented, so initialy they are very nervous.

“I believe in the long run it will be good for Sabah,” he told reporters after witnessing the signing of the memorandum of understanding by MASwings, Star Cruises and Airworld Travel here yesterday.

Pang represented Minister of Tourism, Culture and Enviroment, Datuk Masidi Manjun, at the function.

MASwings chief executive Officer, Datuk Capt Mohd Nawawi Awang, said the airline, in collaboration with Star Cruises and Airworld Travel, will offer two new tourism products — ‘Fly and Cruise’ and ‘Manila Sojourn’.

The products offered guests unqiue holiday pakcages that included air travel, sea travel onboard a luxury cruise and a ground tour in Sabah and Sarawak, he said.

Mohd Nawawi said the airline took a bold step to design and offer new and extraordinary travel packages for Sabah and Sarawak.

“We are delighted to work closely with Star Cruises Travel Services and Airworld Travel to bring our guests a complete and innovative travel experience,” he said.

He said under the new tourism packages, MASwings would charter flights for guests. — Bernama

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