Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Foreign companies keen to invest in health tourism in Port Dickson

Two foreign companies have shown interest in investing in the "wellness zone" in Port Dickson, known for its tranquil beaches.

Deputy Tourism Minister Datuk Donald Lim Siang Chai said one of the companies was planning to set up a centre to treat cancer patients there.

The wellness zone is designed to not only treat patients but also to provide a tranquil environment for the sick to recuperate.

A 61km zone in Port Dickson, where international spas and other health tourism facilities would be set up for patients to recuperate, and Nilai have been earmarked for the wellness zone.

Lim, who declined to elaborate on the foreign firms, said the International Trade and Industry Ministry was working with the Finance Ministry on incentives for those who want to operate within the wellness zone.

He said this to reporters after opening a health talk on "Team Up For Healthy Heart" at Pantai Putri Hospital on Sunday.

Lim also suggested that Perak had the potential to set up a wellness zone because of its proximity to Kuala Lumpur and Penang.

He added that foreign patients could be drawn to Perak as the state had a high standard but cheap cost of living.

He noted that revenue from foreign patients seeking medical help in private hospitals in the country had been on the rise.

Last year, he said, some 292,000 foreigners seeking medical treatment in the country brought in a revenue of some RM204mil. In 2005, a total of 232,000 foreign patients brought in a revenue of RM151mil.

He added that the figure was expected to grow further this year.

Source : STAR
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