KUALA LUMPUR: Since the country’s borders reopened on April 1, the number of inbound tourists reached 2.37 million as of June 17, exceeding the target of two million set by the Ministry of Tourism, Arts and Culture.
Minister Datuk Seri Nancy Shukri said 567,299 tourists visited Malaysia in April, 1,037,000 in May and 773,925 in June up to last Friday.
The government is confident the number of foreign tourists will continue to rise and the ministry has revised the target for 2022 to 4.5 million, she said.
However, a second review will be conducted in September, she said in a press conference after having a dialogue with tour operators and the launch of Tourism Recovery Framework (TRF2.0).
“The 4.5 million tourists are estimated to generate RM111 billion in revenue. Maybe we can reach this target before September,” she said.
Nancy said these tourists were mainly from Singapore, Thailand and the Philippines.
“A total of 25,000 tourists from India visited Malaysia this month,” she said.
The government is optimistic about the tourism industry recovery, Nancy said, adding that once China opens its doors, the number of tourists visiting Malaysia will be different.
The ministry released a total of RM23.8 million of financial aid to 15,000 tour operators in the country as of May 5, she said.
As of June 15, the ministry approved 342 applications from homestay operators for aid with a total of RM1.64 million allocation granted.
On the shortage of manpower in the hotel industry, Nancy said the ministry had brought up the matter in the cabinet.
The Human Resources Ministry approved 34,000 foreign workers for the hotel industry under the 2022-2024 plan, she said.