Deputy Tourism Minister talks Malaysian tourism opportunities

The Maldives has pledged to attract 10,000 Malaysian visitors annually by 2014 through focusing on the potential of initiatives like sustainable tourism, according to local media.

Deputy Tourism Minister Mohamed Maleeh Jamal told Malaysian media during the 2012 World Islamic Tourism Mart based in the country, that as the Maldives continued to try and address climate change issues at island level, local resort operators had been pursuing more eco-friendly operations.

Maleeh told Malaysia-based newspaper the Sun Daily that when considering the potential partnerships between the two destinations for sustainable tourism, some 6,555 Malaysian holidaymakers already visited the Maldives over the course of last year. He added that 1,700 visitors from the country had arrived during the first four months of 2012.

Maleeh claimed that with a growing importance attached to Asian visitors coming to the Maldives, local people working in the travel industry had also begun to better acquaint themselves with Chinese, Japanese and Korean languages and cultural practices.

“The number of Chinese tourists, including Malaysian Chinese, to the Maldives is expected to set a new high in 2012. We see them as an important market,” he told the newspaper.