Sunday, September 14, 2014

AirAsia Offers Special Fares On Malaysia Day
KUALA LUMPUR, Sept 14 (Bernama) -- In conjunction with Malaysia Day on Sept 16, low fares airline, AirAsia Bhd is offering a special promotion rate as low as 51 sen to selected domestic and international destinations.

In a statement here Sunday, AirAsia said among the domestic routes in its promotion were from Kuala Lumpur to the respective destinations, namely Penang, Johor Baharu, Kuala Terengganu, Miri and Tawau. The international routes were from Kuala Lumpur to Phuket, Krabi, Bangkok, Phnom Penh and Ho Chi Minh.

The promotion booking period is from Sept 15 to Sept 21, while the travel period begins from Sept 16 to March 31, 2015. The fare does not include taxes and relevant charges.

Meanwhile, AirAsia Berhad is also giving a discount of up to 50 per cent for AirAsia X flights via the promotion 'Fly More For Less' for economy seats to all AirAsia X destinations, including Australia, China, Taiwan, Sri Lanka and Nepal.

The 'Fly More For Less' promotion starts on Sept 15 until Sept 21 for travels from Sept 15 until Nov 30.


GST Could Help Attract More Tourists

KUALA LUMPUR, (Bernama) -- The Tourist Refund Scheme (TRS) under the Goods and Services Tax (GST) to be introduced in April 2015 can contribute to greater number of tourist arrivals.

The Dean of the Hotel Management and Tourism Faculty at Universiti Teknologi MARA (UiTM) in Shah Alam Assoc Prof Dr Mohamad Abdullah Hemdi opined that as TRS allowed tourists to reclaim the GST paid, they would not curtail on their spending during their stay in the country.

"TRS is only applicable for the goods taken out of Malaysia by the tourist and does not apply on services or products paid for and utilised in Malaysia including hotel and food bills, and etc.

"Tourists should ensure the tax invoice is handed over with the purchase receipt to support the refund process. This scheme, however, is only applicable for tourists who use air transport and have spent a minimum of RM300 including of taxes at approved outlets," he told BERNAMA.


According to the Royal Malaysian Customs GST Division Deputy Director, Tan Sim Kiat, the department is now in the process of choosing the TRS agents, who were responsible in identifying the outlets to refund the tax to the tourists.

The agents would identify the outlets to establish partnerships before GST is implemented on April 1, 2015. "After the outlets are identified, the visitors could head to the respective outlets to buy duty free goods. When they buy the duty free goods to take back with them, they can reclaim the taxes, that will be refunded by the TRS agent," he said when met at the 2014 National GST Conference, in July.

Mohamad Abdullah said zero rated goods (after the TRS) would make Malaysian goods more competitive at the global stage. The tax rebate promotion for tourists and an efficient tax reclaim process will help make Malaysia a shopping destination and draw more tourists.

"GST will help reduce costs in conducting business in Malaysia and at the same time will enhance the competitiveness of the country's tourism sector. "Though the GST rate of six percent in Malaysia is reasonable, we should not forget our neighbours who may try to enhance their competitiveness by bringing down the tax rate in drawing visitors to their respective countries," he said.


An international business management lecturer at Universiti Utara Malaysia Prof Dr Mohamad Hanapi Mohamad said in Europe, visitors were allowed to reclaim their Value Added Tax (VAT) on their purchases and local services. Therefore, he opined that TRS could be implemented effectively if all purchases were done with receipts and invoices that state the VAT of GST rates.

Speaking of the GST rates in Malaysia, Mohamad Abdullah said the six percent is the lowest among the ASEAN nations and it could drive the nation towards greater competitiveness.

Nonetheless, he admitted that the rates could affect the tour operators' costing, when the additional costs were transferred to the tourists thus pushing up the price of tourism services. "However, there is also a likelihood that the GST cost could be absorbed by tour operators so that they could compete," he said adding that the tourism industry is highly sensitive to pricing wars.


Touching on ways to draw more tourists after the GST comes into force, he said the main thing that one has to ensure is that the tour operators avoid raising prices indiscriminately on the pretext of GST. He said the accurate information and a transparent and an effective GST management would provide a helping hand for the industry.

The Ministry of Tourism and Culture, he said should cooperate with the GST Monitoring Committee to ensure tour industry players avoid manipulating tourists with wrong information on GST.

"I support the government's effort of establishing the GST Monitoring Committee in ensuring GST implementation. The committee should ensure the policies, laws and guidelines relating to GST are sufficient and should monitor the implementation by the respective agencies," he said.


MASwings Can Boost Trade, Tourism In BIMP-EAGA: Masidi

KOTA KINABALU, Sept 13 (Bernama) -- Community airline MASwings has the potential to enhance trade and tourism in the Brunei-Indonesia-Malaysia-Philippines East Asean Growth Area (BIMP-EAGA), says Sabah Tourism, Culture and Environment Minister Datuk Masidi Manjun.

He said MASwings, a subsidiary of Malaysia Airlines (MAS), can still compete with the other airlines that have established themselves in Sabah and Sarawak.

The Sabah market is becoming more competitive with more airlines interested in linking Sabah with other international routes as well as increasing frequency within the state itself, Masidi told reporters after launching MASWings' Like Never Before promotion and 8.88 Million Passengers celebration here Saturday.

Masidi commended MASwings' management and staff for being able to achieve the number of passengers within just seven years and for fulfilling its obligation as an airline appointed by the government to provide rural air services.

Meanwhile, chief executive officer Captain Ritzerwan Rashid said MASwings will work with the state government to expand its services in the region in the future. It will also hold roadshows at every potential destination in Sabah and Sarawak in conjunction with this promotion, starting with Labuan followed by Tawau, Miri and other destinations until year-end, he said.

He said MASwings is offering one-way fares of RM88 to or from any destination in Sabah and Sarawak until Dec 31 for travel from Sept 10 to March 31 next year.


Saturday, September 13, 2014

APEC to create next-generation tourism industry with Macao Declaration
Tourism Ministers from APEC’s 21 economies have adopted a set of measures that ensures the Asia-Pacific travel and leisure industry keeps pace with changing consumer trends and advances in technology.
New initiatives from facilitating tourist travel and promoting smart digital technologies in modern tourism management to developing sustainable, low-carbon tourism destinations are outlined in the Macao Declaration, adopted today by the 8th APEC Tourism Ministerial Meeting, chaired by Shao Qiwei, Chairman of the China National Tourism Administration.
The Macao Declaration can be viewed at this link.
“By removing barriers and improving the integration of the Asia-Pacific tourism market, APEC can meet its new target of 800 million tourists by 2025,” said Vice Premier Wang Yang of China’s State Council, in his opening remarks.
“Through encouraging the flow of people and investment within the region, the development of the tourism sector helps contribute to an open market while boosting regional connectivity and economic growth.”
Making it easier for tourists to travel throughout the region remains an important priority. APEC members plan to work on improving visa processes and shortening wait times for tourists at airports to help boost tourism industry growth. By improving visa processing, APEC stands to gain up to 57 million additional international tourist arrivals by 2016 and an estimated 2.6 million new jobs, according to the United Nations World Travel Organization and the World Travel and Tourism Council.
“We welcome promoting the tourism sector as a key pillar in APEC’s work,” said Mari Pangestu, Indonesian Minister of Tourism and Creative Economy, in her remarks on behalf of APEC Ministers at the opening ceremony.
“The sector is critical economically for the region with the Asia-Pacific enjoying the largest tourism market in the world. Globally, the tourism industry is the third largest sector, providing one in eleven jobs worldwide,” added Minister Pangestu.
In order to promote the tourism sector in the region, APEC member economies will implement a number of initiatives to further develop the industry and respond to changing consumer demands.
As more tourists use the internet, mobile phone apps, and other online tools to make travel plans, consumers have become technology-savvy—raising new requirements for the industry. APEC members will work together to boost innovation and promote digital technologies in the tourism sector from smart hotels offering check-in on mobile devices to real-time collection of tourist data for tailoring personalized hotel or sightseeing services.
APEC also plans to better integrate the travel and leisure sector with related niche markets such as medical tourism, rural specialty tours, and cruise-based tourism. Creating a favorable policy environment to promote low-carbon tourism destinations with hotels powered by solar or biomass energy and providing more eco-based tour packages is also an important focus ahead.
“Creating a next-generation tourism sector by seamlessly connecting tourist travelers, integrating new digital technologies and offering sustainable tourism destinations are key to maintaining a competitive industry,” concluded Dr Alan Bollard, Executive Director of the APEC Secretariat.
“Adapting our tourism sector to these new trends will ensure the Asia-Pacific remains a leading tourism market globally while preserving the region’s cultural and environmental heritage.”
-8th APEC Tourism Ministerial Meeting

Superb Line Up For Doubles Event At Malaysian Open, Kuala Lumpur ( 20~28 September 2014 )

Grand Slam Champions, Grand Slam finalists, ATP Masters 1000 stars, and winners of titles on the ATP World Tour will all be featuring in the doubles event at the US$1,022,255 Malaysian Open, Kuala Lumpur to be played at Putra Stadium, Bukit Jalil, September 20 to 28, 2014.

“The doubles game is always exciting and full of quick quick action and it has provided fans in Malaysia plenty of great excitement over the years – we have had many great doubles Finals in KL,” said Tournament Director Nick Freyer of IMG.

“The doubles draw has such a wide cross-section of players from Grand Slam champions like Leander Paes, making his KL debut, through to Grand Slam finalists from this year such as Eric Butorac and Raven Klaasen, who are very familiar to fans in KL as our defending Champions. Butorac is a two time doubles winner at the Malaysian Open.”

More than likely the top seeds will be the defending champions Eric Butorac and Raven Klaasen who started the season in sensational fashion by making the Australian Open final. They won Memphis, made the finals of ’Hertogenbosch, Munich and Auckland, the quarters of the US Open, Bucharest and Acapulco and the last 16 of Wimbledon.

Paes is one of the most iconic doubles players in the game. He is a winner of 53 career titles and during the week of this year’s tournament will team up with inaugural Malaysian Open, Kuala Lumpur doubles champion, Marcin Matkowski, a winner of 14 career titles himself. Just this year Paes made the final of Washington, semis at Wimbledon, quarters at the Australian Open, Indian Wells, Queen’s and Eastbourne, while Matkowski made the final in Bucharest, the semis in Rotterdam, reached five quarters and the last 16’s at the Australian Open, Wimbledon and US Open.

Adding further lustre to the doubles draw is the news that former Wimbledon and US Open Doubles Champions Jurgen Melzer and Philipp Petzschner have requested, and received, the second and final doubles wild card for the tournament. The first wild card pairing combines the “½ Kampung Kid” Nick Kyrgios with Malaysian standout player of 2014, Syed Mohd Agil Syed Naguib.

Teaming up in KL will be the tournament’s reigning singles champion Joao Sousa who pairs with Leonardo Mayer. The two made the semis at Winston-Salem. Sousa was also a semi-finalist in Oeiras and Sydney, reached four quarters and the 16s at the French Open, whereas Mayer was a quarterfinalist at the US Open doubles, along with Nice, Casablanca, Sao Paulo and Rio.
The Brit-Aussie tandem of Jamie Murray, brother of Andy Murray, and John Peers won Munich and were finalists at Winston-Salem and Queen’s, semi-finalists five times, twice quarterfinalist and made the last 16 at Wimbledon and US Open.

Scott Lipsky and Rajeev Ram were semifinalists at the recent US Open. Lipsky also won the doubles at Dusseldorf and Oeiras, was a finalist once, a semi-finalist once more and a quarterfinalist four times, while Ram made the final in Newport and semis in Washington.

Dominic Inglot and Florin Mergea will offer stiff competition while Julian Knowle, a winner of 18 titles including the US Open, will combine with Andre Begemann once again – they won Halle together three months ago. With other partners they also won another title each and made the quarters or better at another 16 events.

The tournament is proud to welcome back its suite of official sponsors. In addition to the distinguished support of the Ministry of Tourism and Culture, Malaysia and Tourism Malaysia as well as the Ministry of Youth & Sports, the event is proud to have prestigious commercial sponsors that include Rado, CNN International, the DoubleTree by Hilton Kuala Lumpur, Wilson, the Albukhary Foundation, Astro, the ATP World Tour’s Premier Partner Corona, as well as welcome on board KPJ Healthcare Berhad, making its first foray into sponsorship of professional tennis. Other supplier level sponsors include House Restaurant, Cream & Fudge, Pizza Hut, 100Plus, KFC and KiekLover.KL.

Tickets prices remain very reasonable and range from RM 10 to RM 160. There will be free admission between Saturday, September 20 and Tuesday, September 23. Tickets can be purchased now on-line via the tournament website, at TicketCharge outlets or through the ticket hotline at TicketCharge Ph: 603-92228811
For more information on the tournament, visit or or


Friday, September 12, 2014

Malaysia Islamic Arts & Tourism Souq 2014 ( 18~21 September 2014 )

SHAH ALAM, 10 September 2014: Tourism Malaysia Selangor with the cooperation of the Selangor State Tourism, Islamic Tourism Centre and Yayasan Restu will be organizing the Malaysia Islamic Arts & Tourism Souq (MIATS) at Kompleks Taman Seni Islam Selangor, Shah Alam from 18 to 21 September 2014, from 9 am to 10 pm.

The event will be launched by the Minister in the Prime Minister’s Office, YB Mejar Jeneral Dato’ Seri Jamil Khir Hj Baharom (B) in the presence of the Deputy Minister of Finance YB Datuk Haji Ahmad Haji Maslan. 

The event will feature Muslim-friendly programmes to promote the concept of tourism and Islam. Activities scheduled include exhibitions of artefacts from the Islamic civilization, Islamic fine art and Islamic calligraphy; a tourism fair; a forum to discuss tourism and Islam; a sales bazaar; and a cycling programme around Shah Alam. Other activities include competitions, workshops, and other family-oriented and children-friendly programmes.

JAIS, Halal Development Centre, Darul Jenazah, Persatuan Cina Muslim Malaysia, Pertubuhan Pembangunan Nadi Malaysia, Persatuan Pencinta Jawi Selangor, Akademi Kaligrafi dan Jawi and other organizations are also partners to make MIATS a success.

This event will further strengthen Malaysia’s standing as the world’s leading Muslim-friendly destination, as ranked by Crescentrating Travel Consultancy in 2013. In its survey of 50 countries, Malaysia was placed first with 8.3 points. 

Besides providing easy access to halal food, Malaysia also offers many Muslim-friendly facilities such as mosques and prayer rooms in many places including shopping malls and airports. Total Muslim tourist expenditure is expected to reach $192 billion a year by 2020.

MIATS is also among the 200 events held as part of the Visit Malaysia Year 2014 campaign that is expected to bring in 28 million tourists and RM76 billion receipts by year-end.
For more details, kindly contact YM Raja Munirah Raja Adnan or YM Raja Azlan Putra Raja Zainal Alam Shah, Tourism Malaysia Selangor at 03-5510 9100.

-Tourism Malaysia.

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

MATTA gears up for annual ecotourism conference
The Malaysian Association of Tour & Travel Agents (MATTA) will organise its annual Asia Pacific Ecotourism Conference (APECO) in Sabah next month.

Held from October 16 to 18 at The Pacific Sutera Hotel, Kota Kinabalu, the two-day conference is themed Adding Value Through Eco-Tourism Development and comes with a one-day pre-conference workshop.

Attendees can expect 16 speakers from four continents sharing their knowledge and experiences with ecotourism. This includes: Masaru Takayama, executive director, Japan Ecolodge Association, who will talk about ecotourism’s contribution to conservation; Alison Pritchard, manager, Mulu National Park in Sarawak who will speak on the place of tourism in park conservation and on developing ecotourism facilities in national parks; and Ross Dowling, who will speak on geotourism and geoparks.

Organising chairman, Albert Teo, said: “This will also be a great opportunity for academics, industry experts and practitioners to network and share their expertise and know-how on the latest trends in marketing, conservation, ecolodge design and operations, and community-based projects during the coffee breaks, workshops and post-conference tours.

“Delegates will learn to manage, market and maintain ecotourism facilities, products and services using sustainability, community benefits as the guiding principle.”

Hamzah Rahmat, MATTA president, added: “The conference and pre-conference workshop is meant to share best practices and to give participants a better understanding of more effective methods and technologies for ecotourism and sustainable development. “

APECO is open to both MATTA, non-MATTA members, and students. For further details of this conference, email
-TTG Asia.

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Starhill Gallery Presents A Journey Through Time VIII

KUALA LUMPUR, 5 SEPTEMBER 2014 – Starhill Gallery will once again host A Journey Through Time, the grandest luxury timepiece and jewellery showcase in Asia. Endorsed by the Ministry of Tourism and Culture, Malaysia, the annual showcase has become well-known worldwide for bringing together the biggest and most prominent names in the watch and jewellery industry.   

Celebrating its eighth edition, A Journey Through Time VIII, will run from 21 – 28 November 2014 and is set to feature over 125 luxury brands, 20 of which are debuting in Malaysia.

Paula Conway, Sales and Marketing Director for Starhill Gallery said, “A Journey Through Time is an iconic event, one that Malaysia can truly be proud of. It is our most elegant showcase and plays a vital role in diversifying retail activities in Malaysia. This is in line with the objectives of the Ministry of Tourism and Culture, Malaysia to uphold the country’s profile as the preferred travel destination”.

A wide array of activities are planned throughout this edition, starting with regional road shows in Singapore, Malaysia, Australia and Japan crafted to build excitement and attract visitors to the main showcase. The main showcase itself promises to be even more dazzling as the organisers have planned a myriad of activities spanning across two floors totalling 30,000sq. ft.

Visitors can look forward to chic fashion parades, exclusive and educational watch and jewellery talks, delectable cuisines as well as performances from international artistes. As there will be much to experience and appreciate, one can also reserve a complimentary guided tour led by watch experts from Starhill Gallery’s very own Watch Concierge.

As a premier watch event, notable brands such as Bedat & Co, Cecil Purnell, Hermès, Omega, Hublot, Jaeger-LeCoultre, Ulysse Nardin, Breguet, Dior and Maîtres du Temps will all have stunning pieces on display alongside Khronos, a multi-brand boutique which is home to a selection of brands. Also present will be celebrated jewellery brands such as Gubelin, Carrera y Carrera, Garrard and Damiani, which is celebrating its 90th anniversary.

Keeping to tradition, the most impressive pieces on display during A Journey Through Time VIII will be recognised and awarded at a grand gala dinner held as a fitting finale to this eight-day affair. The award winners will be selected by an international panel of five qualified judges including the well-known Dr. Bernard Cheong, who remains the only Asian who has presided over both the Grand Prix d'Horlogerie and the Fondation de la Haute Horlogerie.

Adding to the festivities this year, A Journey Through Time VIII will also host the Twisted Malaysian Fair which will feature gastronomical delights prepared by Chef Matthew Ona, the Executive Chef for Shook!, Kuala Lumpur.

As a special promotion in conjunction with the event, both the JW Marriott Kuala Lumpur, and The Ritz-Carlton, Kuala Lumpur are offering attractive packages for both domestic and international visitors. All hotel packages also include invites to the event’s gala dinner.

The package being offered by JW Marriott, Kuala Lumpur is:
Package A
• (2 nights) at RM838 nett (Deluxe Room)
• Package is inclusive of breakfast for two persons and two seats to attend the A Journey Through Time VIII Gala Dinner

The Ritz-Carlton, Kuala Lumpur is offering:
Package B
• (2 nights) at RM1018 nett (Deluxe Room)
• Package is inclusive of breakfast for two persons and two seats to attend the A Journey Through Time VIII Gala Dinner

For further information on the event, kindly log on to
-Starhill Gallery.

Kedah establishes tourism board to lead international promotions

The Kedah state government is setting up a state tourism board to spearhead domestic and international promotional activities, and the search for a suitable candidate to head it is on now.

“Kedah is rich in history, culture and nature. We have a lot of products, but nobody knows about it,” said Mohd Rawi Abdul Hamid, executive councillor and State Tourism Council chairman, Kedah.

He shared that the leader for the new tourism board is likely to be selected within a month or two, and will ideally come with tourism industry knowledge, but from the private sector.

Pishol Ishak, immediate past chairman, Malaysian Association of Tour and Travel Agents Kedah Chapter, said: “It is high time Kedah set up a state tourism board so we are on a par with domestic and regional destinations in attracting tourists. Industry players will be able to work with the board to meet common objectives and goals.”

Anthony Wong, group managing director of Asian Overland Services Tours & Travel, said the board should also look at promoting Langkawi as it falls under the state of Kedah.

He said: “Langkawi has to be integrated into the tourism plans for the state. The board will also have to do a product audit to know what is there, what products have to be further upgraded and exposed more.” 
-TTG Asia.

Sunday, September 7, 2014

Konsert Hayat... 45 Tahun Seniman Ramli Sarip @ Istana Budaya Kuala Lumpur ( 17~19 Oktober 2014 )

Penerbit:Rasamusic Sdn Bhd
Tempat:Panggung Sari, Istana Budaya
Tarikh:17-19 Oktober 2014
Masa:8.30 malam
Harga Tiket:RM83, RM133, RM203, RM263, RM323, RM383, RM443
Hotline :+603-4147 8600

Shila Amzah Love Live In Malaysia ( 13 September 2014 )

Malaysia renowned artist, Shila Amzah, is going to launch her very first live in second half of 2014. No doubt, Shila is currently one of the best voices found in Asia; her unique voice has brought her to another level especially in her achievement in China. The theme of her live is about “LOVE”;Shila believes its will create a harmony and peaceful world. She said love is able to turn enemies into friends, she wishes to use her love songs to conquer the hearts of everyone. Love is able to gather us together even we are from different parts of the world. She wishes that her long songs were able to convey the love stories and be grateful to all the people who love her.

Shila is the up and coming star in Asia. In 2007, she has took part in 8TV’s “One in a Million” second season and won herself 1st runner up. On the following year, she became the champion in “Asia New Singer Competition”, is a singing competition established by Shanghai Cultural Development Foundation in Shanghai, China, featuring younger and relatively unestablished contestants from many Asian countries.

At the later stage, Malaysia famous music producer, Mr Ong Peng Chu has discover the talent of Shila and encourage her to enter the world largest Chinese market, China. In 2012, with the encouragement from her manager Mr. Ong, she decide to join Asian Wave, a Chinese reality singing talent show held in Shanghai by Dragon TV. On 20 September 2012, Shila became the champion inAsian Wave. Shila Amzah had the most online votes among all the contestants, and her winning song is "Zheng Fu (征服)" by Na Ying.

In 2014, Shila Amzah an invitation to “I’m A Singer” (season two). She has finally begun her journey, and been taking on one big, sweeping ballad after another such as Guan Zhe’s Xiang Ni De Ye, Jay Chou’s Zui Chang De Dian Ying and Beyonce’s Listen to rave reviews. And each time she takes the stage, her gait, her piercing eyes, her dramatic gestures speak of the eagerness of a woman who’s knee-deep in the trenches in war – a musical one. Through I’m A Singer 2, besides her remarkable live performance, and yet shehas talents in languages. Being a non-Chinese singer, she just used 4 days to learn a new Chinese song, don’t you think is amazing. Besides, I’m A Singer 2 competition also helping her to have a large base of China and Hong Kong fans.

Exclusive bought to you by Mega Ultimate Sdn Bhd and Shila Amzah Entertainment Berhad, Shila Amzah Live in Malaysia will be held at Mega Star Arena on 13th September 2014 (Saturday). The official ticket launch will be held on 28th June 2014. The tickets price category as follow: VIP – RM268, PS1 – RM138 & PS2 – RM98 (All ticket prices exclude RM3 ticketing agent administration fee)

Shila Amzah Live in Malaysia 2014 is jointly organize by Mega Ultimate Sdn Bhd and Shila Amzah Entertainment Berhad, Mega Star Arena is the Official Concert Venue,My FM & Era FM as Official Radio Station, Paradigm Mall as Official Mall, Premiere Hotel as Official Hotel, Airasia as Official Airline,Alexandre Christieas Official Watch, Special Thank ESS。
Website / Contact Hotline : 603 - 8775 4666 (Working Days 9am-5pm), or visit or Mega Ultimate hotline: 03-91077223 (Working Days 9am-5pm), or visit
Get your tickets from:
1. Online at
2. Rock Corner outlets:The Gardens (TEL: 03 - 2201 4893)
KLCC (TEL: 03 - 2181 5560)
Subang Parade (TEL: 03 - 5613 1139)
The Curve (TEL: 03 - 7733 1139)
3. Victoria Music outlets:Sg Wang(TEL: 03 - 2148 7208)
Amcorp (TEL: 03 - 7956 0592)
Tropicana (TEL: 03 - 7722 2955)
4. Artist Gallery:Gurney Plaza, Penang
Queensbay Mall, Penang
5. KL Life CentreTEL: 03 - 2162 2570
6. Tune StoreLow Yat Plaza


Saturday, September 6, 2014

Nazri Touts Malaysia's Unique Culture In Turkey

ISTANBUL, Sept 6 (Bernama) -- Promoting Malaysia among the Turkish public, Malaysia's Tourism and Culture Minister Datuk Seri Mohamed Nazri Abdul Aziz says the Southeast Asian nation was a unique treasure trove of culture and experiences which delight travellers from all over the world.

He noted that Malaysia, a cauldron of multiracial co-existence, had always featured on the world map as one of the key destinations in terms of diverse ethnic and cultural experiences.

"Our Malaysia Truly Asia brand is well-recognised and much appreciated worldwide for us to emerge as one of the most visited tourist destinations. "It's crucial testament that our colourful culture is a powerful brand for our nation," he said when opening the Malaysia Cultural Week here Saturday.

Mohamed Nazri said a large part of the Malaysian tourism sector was driven by its well-preserved cultural and natural heritage. With the theme, 'Culture of 1Malaysia', the Malaysia Cultural Week was launched against the backdrop of the 50th anniversary of diplomatic relations between Malaysia and Turkey.

According to Mohamed Nazri, there had been a significant increase in the number of arrivals of Turkish visitors to Malaysia, from 9,909 in 2012 to 12,755 last year. Until May this year, a total of 7,802 Turkish tourists had visited Malaysia, an increase of 62 per cent as compared to 4,837 in the same period last year.

Present at the event were Turkish Deputy Culture and Tourism Minister Abdurrahman Arici, Malaysian Ambassador to Turkey Amran Mohamed Zin, Malaysian Tourism and Culture Ministry deputy secretary-general (culture) Datuk Abdul Ghaffar A. Tambi and Tourism Malaysia deputy director-general (promotions) Datuk Azizan Noordin.

The Malaysia Cultural Week aims to promote Malaysia and introduce Malaysian culture to the international community, in conjunction with Visit Malaysia Year 2014. It features 17 booths open from 10am to 6pm, from Sept 5 to 7.

Among the activities organised are Malaysian cultural performances, craft demonstration and sales, art exhibits and painting demonstrations and displays of fashion and textiles.

Mohamed Nazri also took the opportunity to promote the 'Malaysia Year of Festivals' (MyFEST) 2015 with the theme, 'Endless Celebrations'. The event will showcase the unique facets of Malaysia through its multi-ethnic festivals, culture, traditional heritage, lively city vibes, tantalising delicacies and more.


Regatta Continues Promoting Sarawak As One Of World's Tourist Destination

KUCHING, 6 Sept (Bernama) -- The Sarawak Regatta will continue to become a major event to promote the state as one of the world's tourist destination, Chief Minister Tan Sri Adenan Satem said.

He said the annual regatta, which was first introduced in 1872 during the Rajah Brooke era, would continue to be held to preserve and promote the uniqueness of the Sarawak's culture.

"It will surely become major attraction for tourists in Sarawak, especially for those who are looking for the preserved culture and uniqueness while enjoying the phenomenal views of the Sarawak River," he said when opening the Sarawak Regatta 2014 at the Kuching Waterfront here today.

Adenan said all the state's uniqueness, specialties and diversified culture and heritage showcased during the regatta were able to increase the number of tourist arrivals to Kuching each year, besides turning the state's capital as the meeting point for the locals. "It also helps promote the cultures of the various ethnicities in Sarawak, hence strengthening the spirit of unity, tolerance and goodwill among the people," he said.

Meanwhile, State Housing and Tourism Minister Datuk Amar Abang Johari Tun Openg said the regatta was now the second biggest attraction for Sarawak after that of the Rainforest World Music Festival.

He said the fact that the regatta was introduced over 100 years ago made it unique and rich in historic value. "The main attraction will be the race for the coveted 'King of the River' title tomorrow," he said.

He said, on the sidelines, there would also be an exhibition of handicrafts, food and traditional performance to introduce and promote the various ethnicities in Sarawak to the visitors.

The regatta, which began today, saw the participation of 20 local and foreign teams, namely the Dragon Hunters of Newscastle from Australia, Canadian Dragons of Canada, Hong Kong Freedom of Hong Kong, University of Macau, Brunei Darussalam, Ministry of National Development of Singapore, Polytechnic of Singapore, Filipino Dragons from Philippine, De La Salle University Dragon Boat Team from Philippine, Bugsay Boracay from Philippine, Nonthaburi Municipality of Thailand, Chinese Taipei and PODSI from Indonesia.

The six Malaysian teams were Sabah Tanjung Papat from Sandakan, Pink Challengers from Putrajaya, Penang Municipal Park Rowing Club of Penang, JB Speed of Kedah, Federation of Kuching and Samarahan Divisions Chinese Associations and North Kuching City Hall.

Also held today was the Brooke Swim competition, which saw former national swimmer Teo Ah Hwa emerged as the champion, while defending champion Ho Chai Hee took second place and Azahari Azman, third.

Over 10,000 people flocked the Kuching Waterfront since 8 am today to watch the opening of the regatta.


Organise trips sans breaking the bank at MATTA Fair

Big crowd: Visitors checking out the deals offered during the MATTA Fair September 2014 at PWTC.

KUALA LUMPUR: Kindergarten owner Mohd Roshaini Mat Rasid was all prepped for a holiday getaway with his staff and students. Even though organising a group holiday could be a daunting task, he believed that he could do it without incurring a hefty price tag.
“This is the second time I am organising such a trip. The first was to Cameron Highlands last year. “This year, I hope to take them to Langkawi but I don’t want to fork out too much money, so I am scouting for a good deal,” he said after browsing through one deal offered at the MATTA Fair September 2014.
Mohd Roshaini, who came with his wife Fazarina Abu Zarin, 31, said this was their first time at the fair and they were excited at the possibility of finding the right deal.

The three-day MATTA Fair began yesterday at the Putra World Trade Centre (PWTC), featuring 1,171 booths by tourism industry players offering exciting holiday deals. MATTA Fair organisers are hoping for a bigger crowd this time, targeting 100,000 visitors for the three-day fair compared to the usual average of 90,000 visitors in previous events.
“International destinations are well-received, but a lot of work has been done to promote domestic tourism. We have dedicated one hall towards promoting domestic tourism, which has been aptly named Malaysia Hall,” said MATTA Fair September 2014 organising chairman Rocky Kho.
The fair runs until tomorrow from 10am to 9pm at PWTC. For information, log on to
-thestar online.

SIC announces Muhammad Hafiza Rofa as wildcard for 2014 Shell Advance Malaysian Motorcycle Grand Prix

PETALING JAYA, 4 September 2014 – Kuala Terengganu-born Muhammad Hafiza Rofa, Malaysia’s up and coming sensation in world motorcycle racing, has been named as a wildcard entry for this year’s Shell Advance Malaysian Motorcycle Grand Prix to be held at the Sepang Circuit from 24-26 October. 

The 18-year-old, currently competing in his debut Spanish CEV Repsol championship season with the SIC-Ajo Team, will line up on the grid along with four other Malaysians. Leading the Malaysian cast will be Zulfahmi Khairuddin and Hafizh Syahrin Abdullah, who both rocked the Sepang Circuit to its core in 2012 when they finished on the podium.

The two other riders who will feature in the penultimate round are Azlan Shah Kamaruzaman and Amirul Hafiq Azmi, in the Moto2 and Moto3 categories respectively. 

The Shell Advance Motorcycle Grand Prix has rapidly evolved into a major event that is eagerly awaited by thousands of Malaysians and millions of fans from all around the world. Each year, more and more local and foreign fans have made their way to Sepang to catch the action. 

Even more encouraging is the rising number of youngsters from various backgrounds who are being attracted to the sport. This is a direct result of the success of the Malaysian riders on the global stage. 

Sepang International Circuit (SIC) CEO Datuk Razlan Razali revealed Hafiza’s participation in the Moto3 category during the launch of the Shell Advance Malaysian Motorcycle Grand Prix 2014 held in Sunway today. Also present was Datuk Dr Ong Hong Peng, the Secretary General of the Ministry of Tourism and Culture Malaysia. 

“We are delighted to announce Hafiza as the wildcard for this year’s Shell Advance Malaysian Motorcyle Grand Prix. He is a young and exciting talent and will benefit immensely by racing amongst the best in the world,” Datuk Razlan said. 

“Our Malaysian riders have proven that they are capable of matching the world’s best riders in the past. They have done so well that Malaysian youngsters are now turning to them as role models and heroes instead of the foreign riders. We hope when they compete in front of a massive home crowd next month, they will be inspired to deliver strong performances. ”  

Last year, over 120,000 fans thronged the Sepang Circuit over the three days. This year, with five Malaysian heroes in action alongside the likes of Marc Marquez, who has now won 11 out of 12 races, and many other world-class riders, SIC is expecting 90,000 spectators to pack the stands in Sepang on race day. Hafizh’s recent outstanding performance in Silverstone, where he finished eighth, will also fire up interest amongst the local fans to attend the race. 

A strong united show of support from Malaysian fans from all walks of life will be a positive development following recent adversities faced by the nation.  

Sales have been strong and tickets for the popular Grandstand F have already sold out. “We would like to advise fans to get their tickets early to avoid disappointment,” Datuk Razlan commented.

Meanwhile, off the track, the Mega Motor Carnival has attracted up to 80 trade and vending operators ranging from auto paraphernalia and accessories to clothing. Bike manufacturers will also be displaying their latest products and machines. Fans should not miss the opportunity to catch first-hand the latest on offer in the world of motoring.

Also of interest to local racing fans is the news that they will be able to catch Malaysia’s future stars in action in the supporting race. Round 5 and 6 of the Malaysian Super Series (Bikes) will show a line-up of strong contestants on track. While seven of our brightest talents will be competing in the Shell Advance Asia Talent Cup, racing against leading South East Asian and Asian youngsters, including several Japanese riders.

The seven young riders are Shafiq Rasol (18 years), Shafiq Ezzariq (15 years), Fakhrusy Rostam (18 years), Nazrul Bahauddin (14 years), Ibrahim Norrodin (14 years), Adam Norrodin (16 years) and Helmi Azman (15 years). In Sepang, the Shell Advance Asia Talent Cup will be contested over two rounds – Race 8 and Race 9. If they continue to progress positively, these seven riders will one day represent the country in the Malaysian Motorcycle Grand Prix.

“These riders are being developed by DORNA and SIC to someday take over from the current batch of competitors. Given the right exposure, these boys will go very far,” Datuk Razlan said.

Meanwhile, SIC, in the run-up to the race next month, has initiated a series of exciting activities in Malaysia and the region. In addition to their advertising campaign through the print, electronic and social media, several on-ground activities have also been organised. This includes the popular SIC Zoomers which has groups of bikers visiting popular spots to promote the race, a contest, bike convoys led by Datuk Razlan himself, viewing parties and several others, including special ticket prices open to those who make purchases at the venue.

In the city centre, fans will be entertained by pre-events leading up to the race. In the line-up are a planned special demo run with top MotoGP riders, a track session for biking enthusiasts with the legendary Mick Doohan and many more. Not to be missed is also an exclusive all-female session for the lady bikers out there.

During race week, fans will get to experience the pit lane walk, autograph sessions, the ever popular shopping experience at the Mega MotoCarnival, stunt shows and plenty more. 

The South East Asian Motorcycle Business Forum, which was very well received in the past, will also be held on the sidelines of the Malaysian GP once again this year. 

“This year’s Malaysian GP has all the hallmarks of yet another sensational race. As the penultimate round, there will be much at stake for the riders, some of whom will be battling for the remaining points to secure their positions in the championship. For the Malaysian boys, they will want to give their best in front of their fans. In short, it’s going to be a showdown in Sepang,”said Datuk Razlan.

Friday, September 5, 2014

Malaysia Poised To Be Destination Of Choice Among Turkish Travellers - Mohamed Nazri

photo: MOTAC website
ISTANBUL, Sept 4 (Bernama) -- Malaysia is poised to be a destination of choice among Turkish travellers as the country offers affordable and attractive packages during holidays, said Tourism and Culture Minister Datuk Seri Mohamed Nazri Aziz.

He noted that Malaysia had already received 12,775 Turkish tourists last year, and following the opening of the Malaysian Tourism Office in Istanbul the same year, the number of visitors from Jan to May this year increased 62 per cent.

"With our favorable exchange rate, you will also find that Malaysia is a value-for-money destination. Our hotel rates, food and beverages, and other holiday lifestyle choices are among the lowest in price but highest in quality.

"I would even dare to say that in Malaysia, luxury is highly affordable," he said in his welcoming speech during a hi-tea session with Turkish tour operators and media at the Clarion Hotel and Suite here Thursday.

Mohamed Nazri is currently in Turkey in conjunction with the opening of the Malaysia Cultural Week tomorrow, an event aimed to promote Malaysia and to further introduce Malaysian culture to the international community.

During his speech, Mohamed Nazri also acknowledged that the Visit Malaysia Year 2014 campaign has targeted around 28 million visitors with 13,000 from Turkey.

"Accessibility between our two countries has also shown great improvement with 36 weekly flights servicing the Istanbul-Kuala Lumpur route, both through direct and indirect flights on Turkish Airlines, Malaysia Airlines, Singapore Airlines, Emirates Airlines and Qatar Airways. "With our presence here, we hope to see more direct flights from here which will give more options in terms of air accessibility for people of both countries," he added.