ISKANDAR PUTERI: With the arrival of visitors on the rise, Indonesia and Johor plan to cooperate on tourism.
State Tourism, Domestic Trade and Consumerism Committee chairman Datuk Tee Siew Kiong said both Indonesia and Johor could complement instead of competing against each other in the industry.
“Geographically, Indonesia’s Batam and Bintan islands are located near Johor where Indonesian tourists make up the second largest arrivals after Singaporeans.
“With direct flights from Senai International Airport to three major Indonesian cities as well as other connectivity like ferries, the state government is committed to boosting tourism ties,” he said after receiving a courtesy call from Indonesia’s Tourism Ministry director Rizki Handayani here yesterday.
Last year, there were 1.33 million Indonesian tourists, a 6.26% rise from 1.26 million in 2014.
In the first quarter of this year alone, there were 312,446 Indonesian tourists.
“We are optimistic that the numbers will continue to rise as we have a lot of attractions such as theme parks and the Johor Premium Outlet,” he said, adding that the Johor Tourism Department would be carrying out a promotional event in Jakarta in September.
Rizki said Johor would be a great partner for her country’s tourism industry as the state had many man-made attractions while Indonesia offered natural draws, such as islands.
“Last year, about 1.25 million Malaysian tourists visited places such as Bali, Bandung and Batam but we are hoping to get them to visit other places such as Medan, Aceh and Padang,” she said.
Both Indonesia and Johor, said Rizki, would be coming out with a good marketing strategy.