DPM: Fewer Asean visitors caused slight drop in tourists here last year

Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Ahmad Zahid Hamidi chairs the 14th Tourism Cabinet Committee Meeting at Perdana Putra Building in Putrajaya February 20, 2018. — Picture by Razak Ghazali
Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Ahmad Zahid Hamidi chairs the 14th Tourism Cabinet Committee Meeting at Perdana Putra Building in Putrajaya February 20, 2018. — Picture by Razak Ghazali

PUTRAJAYA, Feb 20 — Tourist arrivals in Malaysia dropped by 3 per cent in 2017 compared to the previous year, Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Ahmad Zahid Hamidi said today.

Zahid said there were 25.9 million tourists last year, and the drop was largely due to a reduced number of visitors from the South-east Asian market which dropped by 3.9 per cent.

“The Asean market continued to dominate our tourist arrivals to Malaysia, with a 75.1 per cent share,” he said in a statement after chairing the Cabinet committee on tourism here.

The tourism industry remains the third biggest contributor to the Gross National Income at RM73.3 billion.

The industry’s manpower was 3.2 million people in 2016, which was 22.7 per cent of the total manpower in the country, he said.

Zahid also announced that a Visit Malaysia Year 2020 secretariat has been formed under Tourism Malaysia to coordinate all programmes regarding the campaign.

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