Malaysia targets 1.5M tourist arrivals from Brunei this year

| James Kon |

MALAYSIA, one of the favourite travel destinations for Bruneians, targets 1.5 million tourist arrivals from the Sultanate this year.

The country recorded a total of 1.4 million Bruneian travellers in 2016, making Brunei its fifth largest market and raking in RM3.7 billion in tourism revenue.

In 2015, some 1.3 million Bruneian tourists visited Malaysia. The tourist arrival figures was revealed by Haji Ibrahim Seddiqi bin Talib, Director of Tourism Malaysia in Brunei Darussalam, during the launch of a slew of holiday packages in conjunction with the Malaysia Mega Sales Carnival to be held from June 15 to August 31 and the Malaysia Year End Sales from November 1 to December 31, 2017, at the Tourism Malaysia office in The Rizqun International Hotel yesterday.

“Bruneian tourists are very important to Malaysia where shopping is one of the main attractions. Many Bruneians also like to spend their holidays in Malaysia. We want to further tap into the Brunei market,” he said.

The director also revealed that some 1.3 million Bruneians travel to Miri and a majority of them make only day trips.

“We would like to see more Bruneians stay overnight in Miri and Kota Kinabalu,” he added.

Apart from shopping, many Bruneians visit Malaysia to meet their relatives as well as for business purposes. Some are heading to the country for education, the director noted.

“Brunei and Malaysia enjoy a close relationship and it is not just Bruneians who visit Malaysia but Malaysians too frequently travel to Brunei.”

Haji Ibrahim Seddiqi bin Talib, the Director of Tourism Malaysia in Brunei Darussalam during an interview. – JAMES KON

Asked about the possibility of introducing a direct flight from Brunei to Kuching, Sarawak, he replied; “We will discuss this issue with MAS Airline as there is a growing interest from Bruneians to travel to Kuching.”

Currently, Brunei is the fifth largest market for Malaysia after Singapore (13.3 million), Indonesia (3.1 million), China (2.1 million) and Thailand (1.8 million), according to Tourism Malaysia figures.

The Asean region continued to be the largest contributor of tourist arrivals for Malaysia with a 75.8 per cent share of the total arrivals. Thailand registered the highest growth of 32.5 per cent, followed by Laos (+27 per cent), Brunei (+22.7 per cent), Indonesia (+9.4 per cent), and Singapore (+2.6 per cent).

Malaysia received 26.8 million tourists in 2016 compared to 25.7 million tourists in 2015, a rise of four per cent.

Correspondingly, tourist receipts rose by 18.8 per cent contributing RM82.1 billion to Malaysia’s revenue against RM69.1 billion in 2015, which translates to an average per capita expenditure of RM3,068.20.

The post Malaysia targets 1.5M tourist arrivals from Brunei this year appeared first on Borneo Bulletin Online.

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