KUCHING: Sarawak is one of the gateways into Malaysia that has the least number of international flights going through it.
According to a press statement from the Tourism Ministry, efforts had been made over the years to get more flights from international routes but with little progress.
At the handover of the Routes Bid document in Manchester, United Kingdom, Tourism Minister Datuk Amar Abang Johari Tun Abang Openg said: ‘‘We are serious in developing tourism for Sarawak, so we need to beat the odds by finding better ways to counter the air accessibility problem. One solution is to bring the Routes Asia event to Kuching so we can convince all airline companies of Sarawak’s potential.”
“This year, we have seen some development in our Regional Airlines with MASwings having started flying to Bandar Seri Begawan and Pontianak. This has helped Sarawak establish a network within the region,” he said.
“Kuching has been identified as one of the Routes Asia event bidders, against two other major cities in China and Australasia. So, if we win this bid, we will stand tall and on par with other big cities in the world,” Abang Johari explained.
Also present were Malaysia Airport Holding Bhd managing director Tan Sri Bashir, Tourism Ministry’s permanent secretary Datu Ik Pahon Joyik and Sarawak Tourism Board CEO Dato Rashid Khan.
Routes Asia is the biggest Asia Pacific’s aviation show for airlines, airports and destinations to congregate for business and networking. It is the platform for business decision and routing expansion for airlines and airports.
Routes’ headquarters is in Manchester.
Five major Routes events are held annually throughout the world.