Monday, September 23

Don’t rely on govt to promote tourism, private sector told

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Abang Johari presenting the newly launched programme book to deputy Resident of Miri Emang Oyoi Emang (second right) as guests look on.

MIRI: The private sector, especially tourism industry players, were yesterday told not to rely on the government when promoting local tourism; instead they should be creative and be more innovative when it comes to introducing Malaysia to the curious world.

“Malaysia is celebrating its Year of Festival this year, a continuation of the Visit Malaysia Year 2014. Therefore, instead of waiting for the government’s effort, the private sector must come in with their own initiative,” said Tourism Minister Datuk Amar Abang Johari Tun Openg at the launch of Miri City’s 10th anniversary logo and programme booklet.

“Miri is a fine example, as it is an entrance to Northern Sarawak and the gateway to many natural heritage, its colourful culture and people; these are the products that are readily available.

“The point is, how to brand, package and promote it to the curiosity of the world,” he added.

Sharing his travel experiences, Abang Johari compared the local promotion method to that of the foreigners, which he said ought to be adopted.

“It is time for travel agencies to change the way they market tourism service to suit the market in any way it needs, identify tourist needs and re-brand to fit into this particular market,” he said.

On this note, he also called for a strategic plan to promote Miri.

“All the products (natural heritage) are available. What they (industry players) need to do is to capitalise on infrastructure, improve and upgrade the facility to fit the tourists and be creative when presenting the product,” he added.

The launch of Miri City’s 10th anniversary logo and programme booklet which was hosted by mayor Lawrence Lai at a hotel here was also attended by GreenTech Malaysia special advisor Tan Sri Peter Chin Fah Kui, Youth Development Assistant Minister Datuk Abdul Karim Rahman Hamzah, Assistant Minister of Early Childhood Education and Family Development Rosey Yunus, deputy mayor Mohd Chee Kadir as well as councillors and
guests.

Elaborating on the booklet, Lai said it is a useful guide for tourists and visitors as well as a souvenir to remember Miri City.

“In it, you will find a calendar of events for 2015, scenic places of interest, entertainment hot spots, our mouth watering local dishes and delicacies, map of Miri etc. Not forgetting the diverse culture to sports, for all visitors to relax, enjoy and experience when in Miri,” he said.