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ATF 2018: Brunei hopes to do better in tourism


BANDER SERI BEGAWAN, 8 January 2018: Brunei’s Minister of Primary Resources and Tourism is promoting new destination packages under the umbrella of the Tourism Development Department.

The tour packages focus on the country’s Belait district and position it has a destination for international visitors.

There are eight packages highlighted by the tourism department as part of its efforts to increase tourism to the country.

As the smallest nation, population-wise and geographically, in the ASEAN community, the government has identified tourism as an industry to balance the economy that is dominated by oil and gas.

Officials estimate tourist arrivals will reach 244,000 in 2017 and have projected 278,000 in 2018, based on the nation’s national strategic plan up to 2020.

They claim tourism grows on average by 20% annually but the base is small.

Creating new tour packages is part of its long-term strategy and the latest eight tour options are led by an unusual  “oil and gas” town heritage drive that takes a peep at what made the nation one of the wealthiest oil and gas producers in the region.

The tourism department identified the other seven packages as:

Heritage Drive, Weekend Cultural Experience, Scenic Belait River (Day Cruise);

Sunset Dinner Experience (Evening Cruise);

Labi Nature Tour;

Chasing Teraja Waterfalls,

Teraja Labi Belait Birdwatching;

Tech Dive Belait.

The department also opened its first Tourist Information Centre and launched an exhibition from Scitech, Australia, that features life-size animatronic dinosaur replicas that will be on display for five months.

Brunei will send an official delegate to attend the ASEAN Tourism Forum which will open in Chiang Mai, 24 January.

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