Rainforest World Music Festival to attract 20,000 visitors this year, says Sarawak tourism minister

KUCHING: The Rainforest World Music Festival (RWMF) is expected to attract about 20,000 visitors this year despite competition from other events in the region, says Datuk Seri Abdul Karim Rahman Hamzah.

The state Tourism, Creative Industry and Performing Arts Minister said RWMF had created a niche of its own among world music lovers, with many repeat visitors attending the event.

"Since borders have reopened, there are a lot of music festivals and events going on in neighbouring countries, so there is healthy competition.

"But RWMF has been there for the last 26 years and is recognised as one of the top 25 major international music festivals.

"So it doesn't matter that there will be similar events in the region. We still expect about 20,000 people to come," he told reporters after presenting appreciation mementoes to the festival's sponsors here on Friday (June 9).

Abdul Karim said the response had been good so far, with all 3,000 early-bird tickets snapped up already.

He said about 60% of the tickets went to locals and the rest to international festival-goers.

RWMF will take place at the Sarawak Cultural Village here from June 23 to 25.

In his speech earlier, Abdul Karim said RWMF would continue to advocate responsible tourism in its bid to become a sustainable, eco-friendly festival.

He said RWMF served as a platform to advance the importance of sustainable practices in tourism.

"This reflects Sarawak's clear goal to elevate the reputation and appeal of RWMF, with the aim of making the festival a congregation of traditional sounds and instruments from different corners of the world, bringing people together to celebrate diverse music, arts and culture.

"It will also connect with and embrace the values of sustainability, which is in line with Sarawak's post-Covid-19 development strategy," he added.

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