Beaufort: Tourism industry players in the State who have yet to receive the halal certificate from the Malaysia Islamic Development Department (Jakim) have been urged to do so immediately.
State Assistant Minister of Tourism, Culture and Environment Datuk Kamarlin Ombi said it was to attract more Muslim tourists from countries such as the Middle East and China to come to Sabah.
He said they also found that the presence of the group is relatively low compared to other states, particularly neighbouring countries that have already actively launched their Halal Tourism Industry.
“The move is aimed at strengthening the confidence of Muslim tourists who are very conscious especially in terms of food and beverage preparation.
“Prayer rooms are also lacking, especially in tourist areas such as beaches and islands in Sabah.
“Therefore, any tour operator, hotels and restaurants should provide this need and most importantly get the halal certificate from Jakim which is well-recognised globally,” he said when officiating the Majlis Ramah Mesra Bersama Pengusaha Pelancongan Tempatan at Kampung Weston, here, Sunday.
Kamarlin who is Lumadan Assemblyman said Sabah recorded a total of 4.7 million domestic and international tourists last year – the highest compared to previous years, contributing RM7 billion and becoming the major economic contributor to the State.
He said local tourism operators should, therefore, take the opportunity to implement proactive steps to expand their business.
“Among things one can do include upgrading their tourism premises or conduct active collaboration with tour operators and most importantly, to specialise in the field of Information Technology.
“This is important especially in this technology age where all business aspects be it marketing or promotions are done online. This has also been implemented waide in many countries especially China,” he said. – Iskandar Dzulkifli
Originally published on www.dailyexpress.com.my