KUALA LUMPUR, March 8 — The tourism sector can now breath a sigh of relief after the announcement by Prime Minister Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob today that the country’s borders will reopen on April 1.
Malaysian Association of Tour Agency (MATA) president Datuk Mohd Khalid Harun said its members welcomed the good news and would be implementing various domestic and foreign promotion packages to attract tourists.
“With less than a month (before the borders reopen), our members will offer various promotion packages for domestic and foreign destinations and I am confident that they can prepare various tour packages to market.
“I also would like to advise all members to emphasise on health aspects for every tourist they bring in by preparing COVID-19 self-test kits to montor the health levels of the tourist,” he said in a statement today.
Mohd Khalid added that the they would comply with the standard operating procedure (SOP) that will be set and continue to support and assist the Tourism, Arts and Culture Ministry (MOTAC) to promote Malaysia at the international stage.
Meanwhile, Malaysia Budget and Business Hotels Association (MyBHA) deputy president Dr Sri Ganesh Michiel said although the recovery of the hospitality and tourism industries will take a long time, he hoped that the SOP can be issued before the borders reopen to avoid confusion.
The prime minister said in his announcement today that the reopening of borders is in line with plans to enter the ‘Transition to Endemic’ Phase and was what Malaysians were waiting for as it revitalise the country’s economy that was badly affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.