The number of international visitor arrivals in Southeast Asia for the first quarter this year contracted by 18.9 percent compared with a growth of 7.8 percent in the same quarter of last year.
Pacific Asia Travel Association (PATA) President Gregory A.Duffell cited political instability, natural disasters, acts of terrorism, disease and security issues among the reasons for the drop in inbound arrivals.
Fear of contracting the highly infectious virus Pandemic A(H1N1), brought about thousands of travel package cancellations from May to July this year, he said during the launch of the Standard Online Tourism Architecture (SOTA) international conference here Wednesday.
SOTA is a consolidated tourism e-business platform aimed at uniting government agencies, various sectors of the travel industry and consumers.
It is a travel eco-system to leverage on the power of networking, via collaboration with Google, Cari.com, Nuff Nang, and other social networking websites.
The online platform includes components for travel packages, hotel and flight bookings, and other travel-related technology integral to the entire supply chain of the tourism industry.
The platform was created by Creative Advances Technology Sdn Bhd (CAT) which is also the developer of VirtualMalaysia.
CAT has been an e-business catalyst for the Malaysian tourism industry since its establishment nine years ago.
Source : Bernama
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