MATTA pessimistic 2021 Budget can help revive tourism industry

KUALA LUMPUR: The Malaysian Association of Tour and Travel Agents (MATTA) does not believe that the 2021 Budget, which was passed in Parliament today, would help revitalise the country's badly-hit tourism industry and ensure job security amid the Covid-19 pandemic.

MATTA president Datuk Tan Kok Liang said they maintained their earlier stance that the 2021 Budget does not provide solid programmes to protect jobs and tourism related businesses.

"Moving forward, we hope to work with the Tourism, Arts and Culture Ministry for the eventual easing of border (control) to attract international tourists.

"Other tourism-centric countries are working hard to create green corridors and Malaysia must be working towards this objective.

"Domestic tourism is not the main solution to assist our fledgling tourism industry which is now at its lowest," Tan told the New Straits Times.

Among the initiatives for the tourism sector in the 2021 Budget tabled by Finance Minister Tengku Datuk Seri Zafrul Tengku Abdul Aziz was the RM50 million allocation to train and provide placements for 8,000 employers of airline companies in Malaysia.

Employment opportunities will also be provided for 500 people in the local and Orang Asli communities as tour guides at all national parks in a bid to spur the ecotourism segment as well as RM50 million for the maintenance and repair of tourism facilities.