MATTA visa exemption be granted across the board to China tourists

Published on : Tuesday, June 23, 2015

MATTA visa exemptionMalaysian Association of Tour and Travel Agents (MATTA) president Hamzah Rahmat is calling for visa exemption be granted across the board to China tourists and not limited to group travel only.



Hamzah said “We welcome the move to waive visas for China tour groups but imposing visas on ‘Free Independent Travellers’ will make them feel shunned. Many high-spending tourists travel independently and often at short notice.”



“They spend much more on accommodation, shopping, food and beverage. Last year for
example, 2.2 million China tourists spent a staggering RM86 billion in the United States, or a whopping RM40,000 per visitor. ”



“Malaysia is targeting 29.4 million visitors this year, a rise of 7.3% over 2014 but arrivals for the first quarter dropped by 8.6%. Similarly, we are unlikely to achieve the targeted RM89 billion in tourism receipts if we do not facilitate the entry of more high-spending tourists.”



“MATTA had previously warned that half-hearted measures are not effective to attract more China tourists and had called for visa exemption from the onset. Instead, only free visas were granted at the beginning of this year and the number of China visitors plunged by 27.1% in the first quarter.”



“If China visitors had increased by 27.1% instead of a decrease, total visitor arrival figures
would have dropped by only 4.6% and not 8.6% as recorded in the first quarter of 2015. China tourists are pivotal in the global tourism industry and if we do not woo them to our shores, they will just head to other destinations that are more welcoming.”



“It is imperative that we open our doors wide open and welcome China tourists with open arms if we wish to achieve MyFest 2015 targets. A half opened door may be seen as a half-hearted attempt and will not work,” Hamzah concluded.



Source:- MATTA

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