Traditional performances welcome tourists for Visit Malaysia 2020

Last update: 01/01/2020

KUALA LUMPUR, Jan 1  -- Traditional performances such as the  “Joget Lambak” and “zapin”  by the dance troupe from Istana Budaya greeted tourists arriving at the Kuala Lumpur International Airport 2 (klia2) in Sepang today, adding gaiety and colour to the Visit Malaysia 2020 (VM2020) celebration.

The performances became more lively when tourists and locals also joined in the dance.

Besides  the dance performances, Tourism Malaysia also held a demonstration on wood carving by the Orang Asli community, an exhibition and activities, like batik printing for children.

Meanwhile, at the Kuala Lumpur International Airport (KLIA), traditional dances performances , as well as the “gamelan’’ and “sape” musical performance, were held to welcome the arrival of tourists into the country. Local products, including "dodol” were given away to the tourists as souvenirs.

Tourism, Arts and Culture Minister Datuk Mohamaddin Ketapi was also at the airport to welcome the arrival of 294 passengers on an Etihad Airways flight  from Abu Dhabi.

KLIA and klia2 are among the 22 main gateways into the country where programmes are simultaneously  held today to  welcome tourists in conjunction with VM2020.

The situation at the Sultan Abdul Aziz Shah Airport or Skypark Subang was also lively with the sound of the kompang beat to welcome tourists arriving through the airport.

Selangor Culture, Tourism, Malay Civilisation and Heritage Permanent Committee chairman Datuk Abdul Rashid Asari welcomed the tourists by garlanding each of them with a batik cloth for them to take away as  a souvenir.

When met by reporters, he said the Selangor government was targeting eight million domestic and foreign tourist arrivals in the state for VM2020, with an allocation of RM9.7 million set aside for tourism promotion this year.

He said there are many attractive spots in Selangor, including for eco-tourism and agro-tourism, and believed these places  could attract more people to come to the state.

“For eco-tourism and agro-tourism, we have places like the Sky Mirror in Kuala Selangor and the Selangor Fruit Valley,” he added.

In Perlis, the uniqueness of the traditional dance performances such as “Joget Canggung” and “Inang Tua” was showcased by dancers from the State National Culture and Arts Department at Kangar Municipal Council (MPK) to the awe of some 250 spectators.

Perlis Tourism Committee chairman Asmaiza Ahmad said Perlis would host four major events in conjunction with VM2020, namely the East Wind Festival, Perlis Marathon 2020, World Cup Woodball Championship (WCWC 2020) and Kuala Perlis Water Festival.

In George Town, the Penang government is aiming to get more than eight million domestic and international tourist arrivals through the Penang International Airport (LTAPP) in conjunction with VM2020.

Its Tourism, Heritage, Culture and Arts Committee chairman, Yeoh Soon Hin said it would be an increase of 10 percent from last year.

"Up to Nov last year, the movement we had for domestic tourists was 3.39 million and  4.16 million for international tourists," he told reporters after welcoming passengers arriving at LTAPP today.

He said  tourists from Indonesia, Singapore and China are the biggest contributors to the state’s tourism sector.

The state’s tourism sector will also be given a boost with another airline from Taiwan, Starlux Airlines, to operate daily direct flight to the island beginning Jan 23, he added.

In Langkawi, the Langkawi Development Authority (LADA) has outlined 38 events for VM2020.

LADA deputy chief executive officer (Planning & Development) Zepri Saad said he expected four to five million tourists to the legendary island this year.

In Kelantan, the VM2020 celebration in the state started with the arrival of  Wan Hashim Wan Mahmood, 73, who embarked on a solo tour of southern Thailand since Dec 25, covering 600 kilometers (km) to promote VM 2020 and the Visit Kelantan Year 2020 at the Rantau Panjang Immigration, Custom, Quarantine and Security (ICQS) Complex.

Kelantan Culture, Tourism and Heritage Committee deputy chairman Datuk Hassan Mohamood said the state government aimed to get 5.5 million tourist arrivals this year.

In Johor Bahru, 160 tourists from South Korea were given a warm welcome by “Joh”, the mascot for this year's Visit Johor Year, when they arrived at the Senai International Airport at 1.50 pm today via Jin Air, a South Korean low-cost airline.

Also present to receive the South Korean tourists were Menteri Besar Datuk Dr Sahruddin Jamal, State Tourism and  Women, Family and Community Development Committee chairman Liow Cai Tung and State Secretary Datuk Azmi Rohani.

In Sabah, Assistant State Minister of Tourism, Culture and Environment Assaffal P. Alian was at the  Kota Kinabalu International Airport (KKIA) to welcome 144 tourists from Taipei in conjunction with the launch of VM2020 in the state.

Traditional dances and a performance by the bamboo orchestra were also held to welcome their arrival.

In his speech, Assafal called on the tourism industry players in Sabah, including travel agents, tour guides, taxi drivers, tour bus operators and staff at airports in the state to provide the best experience and hospitality for tourists.

Meanwhile, at the Kuching International Airport (KIA), the first batch of international and domestic tourists who arrived were greeted with cultural and traditional dance performances.

They were also presented with a special VM2020 scarf each as a souvenir to reflect the Malaysian Hospitality. 

Also present to welcome the tourists was the Minister of Tourism, Arts and Culture of Sarawak Datuk Abdul Karim Rahman Hamzah.

-- BERNAMA