KOTA KINABALU, April 22 — The federal government through the Tourism, Arts and Culture Ministry (MOTAC) has allocated RM26.9 million this year to develop the tourism sector in Sabah, with an emphasis on new tourism products.

Its minister Datuk Seri Nancy Shukri said the latest Sabah tourism products will be introduced soon and the government has also allocated RM3.4 million for maintenance of existing tourism destinations and products.

She said under the 12th Malaysia Plan, the ministry has also forwarded a slew of suggested new product developments for Sabah to the Economic Planning Unit (EPU), including the Sabah Cultural Village worth RM80 million and the Sabah Art Gallery worth RM3 million.

“Actually, there are many little things we want to help and implement through different agencies from Sabah to develop the tourism sector here,” she told reporters here today.

Nancy and her deputy, Senator Datuk Guan Dee Koh Hoi, led a delegation from the ministry to pay a courtesy call to Sabah Chief Minister Datuk Hajiji Noor at the Sabah state administration centre here.

Elaborating on the visit, Nancy said she hoped the ministry and the Sabah state government would work closely in developing the tourism sector, which has been badly hit by COVID-19.

“This partnership is important to us as we will always consult each other in terms of tourism-related assignments,” she added.

She said that while things are slow for the tourism sector, it is the right time for industry players to improve the products they wish to offer so that they can be prepared when the country reopens its borders to tourists.

“We must have complete tourism infrastructure when tourists come, so this is the right time to improve the tourism products we offer … Sabah has many products that are capable of attracting tourists that we can focus on,” she said.


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