About 60 international chartered flights to Sabah have been cancelled because the international airport here is being upgraded.
Tourism Minister Datuk Seri Tengku Adnan Tengku Mansor said that there was nothing much they could do about it but wait for the upgrading of the KKIA project to be completed by 2009.
“Most of the chartered flights bringing tourists prefer to land late at night but they cannot do so now because of work at the airport,” he said.
Tengku Adnan, who spent a day in a dialogue with hoteliers, tour operators and tour guides separately, to hear their problems, said that he was informed that the flights were mainly from China, Japan and West Asian countries.
He said that he held discussions with the Singapore-based Tiger Air and several operators in Japan and China to consider including Kota Kinabalu, described as a top eco-tourism destination in the region, in their itinerary.
Tengku Adnan said he was also trying to persuade Malaysia Airlines subsidiary Fire Fly to consider making Kota Kinabalu a regional hub to cover the East Asean Growth Area encompassing Sabah, Sarawak, southern Philippines, Sulawesi and Kalimantan.
Source : STAR
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