KUALA LUMPUR, 13 November 2018 – The Malaysian Association of Tour and Travel Agents (MATTA) is appealing to the Malaysian Government to waive visa fees for Chinese and Indian tourists.
MATTA President Datuk Tan Kok Liang says, “This is necessary in view of Thailand waiving visa-on-arrival (VOA) fees for two months from 1 December to 31 January for visitors from 21 countries, including China and India, in stimulating its tourism industry following consecutive months of year-on-year decline in Chinese arrivals to Thailand.”
“It is given that imposition of visa and its requirements are barriers to foreign visitors, and easing visa restrictions would facilitate tourist arrivals. As such, Malaysia must take the proactive step to waive visa fees, particularly on Chinese and Indian tourists, as they are increasingly responsive and sophisticated.”
“Granting visa fee waiver is common sense to stimulate visitor arrivals and to stay competitive with neighbouring countries. Furthermore, Malaysia and Thailand are inter-connected with tourist from China and India crossing over to Malaysia to extend their holiday.”
“Our previous administration’s concern of Chinese nationals entering our country for work has long been superseded by the meteoric rise of the Chinese economy. Since 2012, Chinese tourists are already the world’s biggest spenders and are known for emptying stores of luxury brands in Europe, and many countries around the world have rolled out the red carpets to welcome them.”
“Chinese nationals travelling to Malaysia may apply for Malaysia e-visas and stay up to 30 days. This single-entry e-visa cost US$40 but the total amount is doubled after adding another US$40 as service fee. If visa fees are waived or Chinese tourists allowed up to 14 days stay without visas, it is certain to attract much more visitors to our shores. If we are not ready to grant Chinese tourists visa free entry for up to 14 or 30 days stay, we could start with waiving visa fee for three months from December.”
“Malaysia must seriously consider giving tourists from China and India visa fee waiver to attract more visitor arrivals and give our economy the much-needed boost”, concluded Tan.
DATUK TAN KOK LIANG
Term 2017 – 2019