Tan elected MATTA president

KOTA KINABALU: Datuk Tan Kok Liang has been elected as the Malaysian Association of Tour and Travel Agents (MATTA) president for the term (2017-2019).

The announcement was made at the 42nd Annual General Meeting of MATTA, Malaysia’s largest tourism association, held at Putra World Trade Centre (PWTC) on July 15 July, MATTA CEO Phua Tai Neng said in a statement.

For more than 26 years, Tan has been a key driving force in the Malaysian tourism industry.

He was the chairman of MATTA Sabah Chapter (2009 – 2013) and thereafter as vice president Inbound & Domestic (2013 – 2017).

He received his early education in Perak, holds a Master’s degree in Tourism (University of Toulouse, France) and is a Chartered Accountant by training.

In his new role as president, he will continue to lead the association in raising the standard of the country¡¦s tourism sector and to strategically position MATTA members to capitalise on the expected increase in tourism numbers both inbound and outbound.

With a vision to ¡§Stay relevant so that all members thrive and become successful¡¨ and mission ¡§Creating business opportunities for members¡¨, the association will continue to grow, benefit members and further improve the landscape of travel and tourism for Malaysia.

Tan¡¦s firm manifesto which focuses on better business conditions and direct member benefit received overwhelming support from members that will ensure the success and progress of the association to serve members nationwide more effectively.

“My focus for the next two years will not only be to develop opportunities for members but, given my background and expertise, will also be to lead members in weathering the storms of change and to fight for better business conditions for the benefit of all,” Tan said.

During his time as MATTA vice president Inbound & Domestic (2013 – 2017), Tan has created numerous business opportunities for members through various sales missions both overseas and locally and other related activities for member benefits.

He has been outspoken on numerous issues affecting the tourism industry and has led the industry in engaging with relevant government authorities on pertinent issues such as tax exemptions, tourism incentives, amendments to the Tourism Industry Act, issues on illegal tour operators, sustainable tourism, and resolving Technical complexities and GST treatment with the Royal Malaysian Customs.

“The election of Datuk Tan Kok Liang as MATTA president is testament to the association¡¦s commitment to the growth of the industry in Malaysia,” MATTA Immediate past president, Datuk Hamzah Rahmat said, adding that he was confident that the new president would take the association to the next level of growth.

In a time of great economic challenges and uncertainty, Tan with his keen insight and dedication to the industry, is the most viable candidate to champion the rights of MATTA members in this coming term.

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