Tuesday, September 17

Sabah, Johor to further boost win-win tourism cooperation

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KOTA KINABALU: Tourism products in Sabah and Johor can be further promoted through greater cooperation between the two states.

TOKEN OF APPRECIATION: Masidi (left) presenting a souvenir to Hoo after a briefing on the Johor Tourism Board Product Mission to Sabah yesterday.

TOKEN OF APPRECIATION: Masidi (left) presenting a souvenir to Hoo after a briefing on the Johor Tourism Board Product Mission to Sabah yesterday.

Johor, being the gateway to Malaysia, would also help boost tourism industry in other states, said Tourism, Culture and Environment Minister Datuk Masidi Manjun, yesterday.

“This close rapport would definitely benefit both Sabah and Johor. Being the gateway to the country from Singapore means that it is one of the most important states in Malaysia in terms of the tourism industry,” he explained.

Speaking when welcoming 33 visiting tourism industry players from Johor here, Masidi said it would be an opportunity to exchange views and information on the tourism packages and destinations available in each state.

The delegates were led by the Johor State Tourism and Trade Domestic Committee (JSTTDC) chairman, Hoo Seong Chang.

“We know that what is good for Johor is good for all states. We would also like to learn how Johor handles the high number of tourists arrivals, which are more than ours. We will counter-visit Johor at a later date,” he said.

Apart from this, he said a golf circuit competition would also be a good idea to attract tourists to both states.

“We can start by playing golf here and ending at other states and next time, it’s the reverse. This may not just be on golfing alone, but we have to leverage on our strongest strength, which is golf; but it is nothing exclusive, over time, we will look at other options … for now, we have to start somewhere,” he said.

Statistics from the JSTTDC recorded 90,713 visitors from Sabah to Johor last year, and 85,591 from Johor to Sabah during the same period.

They attributed this to the daily flights by AirAsia, and expect the number would increase this year.

Touching on the listing of Kuala Lumpur as one of the ‘must-see’ destinations in the world by the New York Times, Masidi said each state in Malaysia had its own uniqueness and strength.