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KUALA LUMPUR, March 9 — The tourism industry is now focusing on maximising existing resources through ecotourism, rural and experiential tourism, as well as enhancing niche products, said Tourism, Arts and Culture Minister Datuk Seri Nancy Shukri.
She said the industry was also looking at expanding more personalised travel packages to gradually revitalise the industry once the borders are reopened.
“The shifting trend in tourists’ preferences after experiencing the Covid-19 pandemic has given a whole new perspective to the tourism industry in the new norm.
“On top of that, climate change and environmental protection are also increasingly becoming important issues in the tourism industry worldwide,” she said when officiating the ITB Berlin NOW 2021 via virtually, here, today.
Meanwhile, Nancy said that Malaysia and Indonesia were discussing an agreement on the Reciprocal Green Lane/Travel Corridor Arrangement (RGL/TCA) aimed at revitalising the tourism and culture industry through business travellers.
On another matter, she said the government was also mulling issuing Covid-19 vaccine passports to those who have been vaccinated, similar to the International Air Transport Association (IATA)’s initiative to launch the IATA Travel Pass, a global and standardised digital passport that will allow people to travel once again and serve as a solution to the aviation sector.
Nancy said Malaysia witnessed a massive drop in international tourist arrivals last year as the number plummeted to 4.33 million, compared to 26.1 million in 2019.
The tourist receipts also plunged by 85.3 per cent from RM86.1 billion in 2019 to RM12.67 billion in 2020, while the average per capita expenditure recorded a total of RM2,928.40, a decline of 11.3 per cent from RM3,300.40 in 2019. — Bernama