Eyeing a sizable share in the outbound Indian tourists, Malaysia Tourism Promotion Board (MTPB) is trying to attract Indian tourists to its country through a marketing exercise by engaging with international tour operators, the director of the board said Monday. The exercise has been started to attract tourists from Gujarat and Maharashtra specifically.
The number of outbound tourists is likely to touch 20 million in 2020 and these tourists are expected to spend 28 billion US dollars, as per assessment of the United Nations World Tourist Organisation (UNWTO) in 2020.
As many as 17 tour agents from Malaysia, assisted by Malaysian Association of Tour and Travel Agents (MATTA), held day-long interactions with over two dozen international operators based in Ahmedabad to explain the tourism potential.
Talking to The Indian Express, MTPB director Mohammed Hafiz Hashim said that currently India is among the top 10 sources of foreign tourists for Malaysia, with 5,52,739 Indians visiting the country in 2017, out of the total of 27 million tourists that the country hosted last year.
The country, Hashim said, wants to raise the figure to at least one million in the current year. According to Hashim, there has been a 17 per cent increase in Indian tourists during January to May 2018, compared to the corresponding period last year.
According to tour operators in Ahmedabad, Gujarat accounts for the highest outbound Indian tourists in the country which is why MATTA is targeting Ahmedabad.
Hashim further said that he was expecting an increase in the numbers owing to incentives introduced by the Malaysian government like incentives for holding conferences, corporate meetings, honeymoon and providing facilities for Indian weddings in Langkawi Island for which they have also tied up with Shangri-La Group of Hotels.