Surge in Chinese and Indian tourist arrivals expected this year

Last update: 03/01/2020

KUALA LUMPUR, Jan 3 -- The government has projected an increase of four million tourist arrivals from China and another million from India this year, Minister of Tourism, Arts and Culture Datuk Mohamaddin Ketapi said. 

  This target is achievable now that the government has allowed visa exemptions of up to 15 days for tourists from China and India from Jan 1 to Dec 31, 2020, he said. 

  “I am confident with this visa exemption we would be able to pull in more tourists, generate more revenue and in the process meet the target of achieving 30 million tourist arrivals this year,” he told reporters at the launch of the Malaysian Association of Tour and Travel Agents (MATTA) Visit Malaysia 2020 (VM2020) vehicle stickers here today. 

Mohamaddin said the ministry was also organising roadshows to promote VM2020 with the aim of attracting tourists from at least four countries, starting with India on Jan 8. 

In this context, he dismissed suggestions that the move to implement the tourist visa exemption programme could lead to overstaying. 

The government, through a gazette dated Dec 26, has given visa exemptions limited to 15 days to tourists from China and India from Jan 1 to Dec 31 this year.

In a separate development, Mohamaddin, when asked on talk that a Cabinet reshuffle was imminent, said he had no reason to worry about such speculations. 

"I'm not worried, why should I? If you want me to do work, then I will. If not, anytime…. why should I worry, about that (cabinet reshuffle) I do not know, you have to ask the Prime Minister whether there is going to be a reshuffle or not,” he said.