JOHOR should seriously look into hosting more international events including sports, which has a global following, to draw more foreign tourists.
Malaysian Association of Hotels (MAH) Johor chapter chairman Ivan Teo said the Formula One Singapore Grand Prix was a prime example of how a major sporting event could elevate the host’s tourism industry.
“Usually when the F1 race is held in Singapore, Johor gets a bit of a spillover as the majority of the race fans will cross the Causeway for a holiday after watching the event.
“Johor itself has what it takes to be a good host of major events, including the infrastructure to provide accommodation for visitors.”
In terms of the number of hotel rooms, Teo said the state was currently second behind Kuala Lumpur.
“There are 18,700 hotel rooms in Johor while Kuala Lumpur has 30,000 hotel rooms.
“However, our number of hotel rooms will go up soon due to internationally known hotel brands looking at establishing their presence in the state,” he said.
Johor is set to host Asia Pacific Climate Week (APCW), a United Nations-backed programme.
Between 1,000 and 2,000 delegates from various countries are expected to attend APCW which will take place from Nov 13 to 17 in Johor Baru.
“The state government has been engaging with stakeholders as part of its preparations to host APCW and this is key to ensuring the event is successful,” said Teo.
“I hope APCW will open the doors for Johor to hold more major international events as I believe that we are ready for it.”