Malaysia, a tourism gem in the heart of Southeast Asia, is poised to unleash its charms at the Arabian Travel Market (ATM) 2009 here next week, to strengthen its presence in the Arab market.
Tourism Malaysia said this would be Malaysia's 16th participation in the ATM scheduled from May 5 to 8 at the Dubai International Convention and Exhibition Centre (DICEC).
"This year, Malaysia is focusing on niche products such as the homestay programme, ecotourism, Malaysia My Second Home, medical and health tourism as well as spa and wellness," the agency said in a statement.
The Malaysian delegation will be led by Tourism Ministry deputy secretary-general (for tourism) Datuk Abdul Ghafar A. Thambi.
It is made up of 136 participants from 83 organisations, both from the government and private sector, comprising 54 hotels, 23 tour operators, three state governments, the KL Tower, national carrier Malaysia Airlines and Tourism Malaysia.
"ATM 2009 is indeed an ideal platform for the Malaysian delegation to network and form strategic alliances with travel trade buyers from the Gulf region. At the same time, the event will help strengthen Malaysia's presence in the Arab market, as it is the premiere tourism fair for the global tourism industry," said Tourism Malaysia.
Malaysia recorded 264,338 tourist arrivals from West Asia last year, an increase of 7.8 per cent over 2007's figure of 245,302.
The Southeast Asian nation drew 37,639 visitors from West Asia in the first two months this year.
According to Tourism Malaysia, the Malaysian tourism industry remained robust, based on the buoyant tourist arrivals -- 3.48 million -- during the two month period.
Malaysia welcomed 22.05 million visitors last year, a 5.1 per cent growth over the previous year.
The country received an award for being the 'Number 1 Holiday Destination in 2006 for United Arab Emirates Residents' from Asfaar magazine, a prominent travel publication in this Gulf state.
A media conference on tourism development in Malaysia will be held at 11am on May 4, at the Godolphin Ballroom, Emirates Tower Hotel.
On May 6, there will be a reception for buyers, travel agents and media representatives at the Malaysia Pavilion, Stand Number AS 510.
Part of the Malaysian delegation will embark on a post-ATM roadshow to Jordan and Syria from May 9 to 13, aimed at promoting the Southeast Asian nation of 27 million people.
Their itinerary includes a series of meetings with local travel trade players and media conferences.
Among the highlights of the roadshow is the Malaysia Night Gala Dinner in the respective countries.
Source : Bernama
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