Saturday, August 20

Abdul Karim: Miri prospective city for tourism, business


(From second left) Warziedea, Ting, Lee and Abdul Karim holding ‘Miri Open For Business Events’ placards with participants.

MIRI: Miri has done exceptionally well in business events with over 1,000 delegates attending conferences this year.

Speaking at the ‘BESarawak: Tribal Gathering’ in conjunction with the launching of Business Events Consortium of Miri (BECoM) at Pullman Hotel Miri yesterday, Minister of Tourism, Arts and Culture Datuk Abdul Karim Rahman Hamzah said Miri is also a powerhouse for oil and gas, agriculture and engineering.

“Miri is a very prospective city for tourism and business, therefore use this as motivation for you to continue the good work.”

Present were Minister of Transport Datuk Lee Kim Shin, Assistant Minister of Tourism, Arts and Culture Datuk Sebastian Ting, Ministry of Tourism, Arts and Culture permanent secretary Hii Chang Kee, Business Events Sarawak chief operating officer Amelia Roziman and Business Events Consortium of Miri chairwoman councillor Warziedea Ahmad.

Also present were representatives from industry partners and players in Miri.

According to Abdul Karim, Miri has long been hailed as the resort city of Sarawak “exceeding our expectations as a tourism hot spot”.

“However, there is strong potential for Miri to excel in business events and today marks the day that we shall drive bigger, bolder opportunities for Miri’s industry players,” he added.

Commenting that the city is not lacking in avenues and places to go, he said it has proper infrastructure, good hotels, good connectivity and good environment and a conducive way of life apart from political stability.

“The added advantage of Brunei as our neighbouring country will open up doors of opportunities for us to stimulate Brunei’s interest to invest in Sarawak as a meetings and conference destination.”

He informed that an announcement was made recently by Sarawak Skills Development Centre that Miri has been earmarked as suitable for robotics, by introducing robotic technology into the primary school education.

He said robotics technology is the future and there is huge untapped potential in the use of robotics in Sarawak.

“I look forward to seeing Miri leading the way for this new development because business events will become a significant factor in building not just the robotics industry, but other industries too.”

He said the formation of the Business Events Consortium of Miri will ensure that Miri’s business events scene grows together with its tourism sector.

He believes for the next few years, business events will be the catalyst to create legacies in society.

“While the economic input is important to Sarawak, the social values that come from such events will change the way our society works,” he said.

Meanwhile, he said from January this year, Sarawak has welcomed more than 17,000 delegates from around the world to attend 39 conferences that discussed healthcare, sports, finance, culture, robotics and philanthropy, among others.

He said this is evidence that Sarawak is a highly diverse destination for associations to hold conferences that cover a variety of themes and topics.

“The ministry aims to bring in five million tourists to Sarawak this year and I believe that Business Events will help us to achieve this target,” he added.

Meanwhile, he disclosed that this year Sarawak will host two world sports events – World Masters Badminton in October and Asia Masters Athletics in December.