KUDAT: Minister of Special Tasks, Datuk Teo Chee Kang is welcoming investors to develop the tourism potentials in Kudat.
Speaking at the inaugural Kudat Tourism Industry Dinner here recently, Teo said that Kudat is the only district in Malaysia to have its own calendar of tourism events.
He said Banggi and Matunggong in Kudat possessed huge tourism potentials such as mesmerizing scenery and tourist attractions, scuba diving sites, abundance of seafood, delicious local cuisines, refined handicrafts and uniqueness in culture.
Teo, who is also the Tanjung Kapor assemblyman, added the State Economic Planning Unit (EPU) had outlined long-term developments in Banggi and Matunggong areas, including upgrading basic infrastructure and road systems to encourage tourist arrivals to Kudat, as well as building a ramp for roll-on-roll-off system to open up the tourism and trade opportunities between Kudat and Palawan, Philippines.
In addition, Teo vowed to strive for allocations from the federal and state governments to develop the tourism industry in Kudat, and to place developments of the district under the 11th Malaysia Plan.
On a related note, he said that Kudat would have the largest marine park in the country, namely the Tun Mustapha Marine Park.
He urged the people in the district not to engage in illegal fish bombing, especially in the vicinity of the marine park because it would damage the marine ecology, which in turn, would affect the future generations and tourism sector in Kudat.
Teo also called on the people to maintain cleanliness in the district and to refrain from littering to avoid leaving a bad impression on tourists.
During the dinner, Teo encouraged the private sector to work hand in hand with the government to develop the local tourism industry.
Although the Prime Minister has recently announced a revision of the National Budget 2015 in view of the drop in crude oil price and weakening of the Ringgit, Teo believed that it would not affect the tourism industry if the private sector worked with the government to develop and overcome the obstacles in the tourism industry.
Meanwhile, Kudat Tourism Association chairman Sabdin Ibrahim said the association had decided on a calendar of tourism events for 2015 and to publish a tourism booklet in its meeting to promote festivals, handicrafts, local cultures, tourism activities and relatively unknown scenic places to attract more tourists to Kudat.
Sabdin said there would soon be an archives in the district to preserve major developments and happenings of the tourism industry in the district.
Around 800 tourism players and guests attended the dinner organized by the Kudat Tourism Association at the Tun Mustapha Community Hall on Friday.
The guests were entertained with a variety of performances, including singing, dancing and cooking demonstration by a renowned local chef.
Also present was Sabah Parks Board of Trustees chairman Datuk Seri Tengku Dr Zainal Adlin bin Tengku Mahamood.