Budget’s initiatives will revive tourism industry, economy, says Nancy Shukri

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PETALING JAYA: Tourism, Arts and Culture Minister Nancy Shukri has given an assurance the government’s efforts for the tourism sector in next year’s budget will facilitate the revival of the industry, which has been severely impacted by the Covid-19 pandemic.

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Besides the initiatives tabled by Finance Minister Tengku Zafrul Aziz last Friday, Nancy said the government had also allocated RM200 million for a stimulus package under the Tourism Recovery Plan for 2021.

“This package will provide assistance in the form of rebates, discounts or subsidies on travel packages through online platforms as well as collaborations with local tourism associations, theme parks, homestay associations, craftsmen and shopping centres to offer attractive travel packages to the people.

“This is expected to boost domestic spending which in turn will boost the local economy,” she said at an engagement session with tourism industry stakeholders today.

Nancy said the ministry would set up programmes to ensure employee marketability under the budget allocations for reskilling and upskilling schemes.

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She said this would be targeted towards graduates and other industry players under the arts and culture sector.

She also said the ministry would make the most of its allocations under the budget to boost the local tourism sector and maintain its competitiveness when international borders reopen.

She called for workers, including production staff, to take advantage of initiatives under the Cultural Economy Development Agency (Cendana), which has been given RM15 million to assist arts and culture programmes throughout the country.

Nancy said she hoped to receive stakeholders’ support in implementing the budget’s plans for next year.

“In facing the current situation, I urge all industry players and associations to unite and work together by helping each other to enhance the sustainability of the tourism and culture industry, which are major contributors to the national economy,” she said. -FMT

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