Revenue from foreign tourist expenditure rose 45.9 per cent to more than RM24 billion in the first half this year compared with RM16.4 billion for corresponding period last year, the Dewan Rakyat was told today.
Deputy Tourism Minister Datuk Donald Lim Siang Chai said tourists from the Asean countries were the main contributors, spending RM15.1 billion, up from RM11.3 billion for the corresponding period last year.
Revenue from tourists from non-Asean countries also saw an increase of 75.2 per cent to RM8.8 billion, from RM5 billion.
"The main contributor to Malaysia's tourism revenue is Singapore with tourists from the country spending RM10.8 billion, followed by Indonesia (RM1.7 billion).
"Brunei contributed RM1.1 billion, Thailand (RM1 billion), China (RM751.9 million), Middle East countries (RM641.9 million), India (RM620.4 million), Australia (RM557 million), United Kingdom (RM488.9 million and Japan (RM392.3 million)," he said in response to Che Azmi Abdul Rahman (BN-Kuala Nerus), who wanted to know the government's expenditure for tourism and revenue earned from the industry.
On expenses of individual tourists during their stay in Malaysia, Lim said it saw an increase of 16.9 per cent from RM1,922.80 between January and June last year to RM2,247.90 over the same period this year.
Lim also said that the Mega Familiarisation Tour organised by Tourism Malaysia generated RM46.8 million in publicity value between January and July this year, involving 3,471 participants.
"The mechanism used to determine revenue from foreign tourists is through studies by Tourism Malaysia at the main entry points into the country and the immigration complex.
"Interviews are held with tourists when they leave the country at the respective locations," he added.
Lim said the tourism sector had indirectly enhanced the socio-economy of other sectors in the country through the creation of employment opportunities and improvement in the living standard of the rural community and the country's image.
Source : Bernama
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