MATTA revives travel mart

KUALA LUMPUR, 3 May 2019: The Malaysian Association of Tour and Travel Agents successfully reintroduced a travel mart (MTEX) at the weekend that had fallen off the travel trade calendar for more than a decade.

MATTA reintroduced the national B2B travel mart partnership with Tourism Malaysia to connect Malaysian tourism players with tour operators from India and countries in ASEAN, namely, Thailand, Indonesia and the Philippines

The event attracted 82 Malaysian companies consisting of tour operators, hoteliers, transport operators with over 150 buyers from India and ASEAN countries

Launched 12 years ago in Melaka, the event fell by the wayside following its inaugural 2007 edition. MATTA revisited the project earlier this year and agreed to revive the show to fill a gap in reaching out to tour operators in India and neighbouring ASEAN countries.

MATTA president, Datuk Tan Kok Liang, said MTEX would support the Visit Malaysia 2020 campaign, which aims to attract 30 million tourists and MYR100bil in tourist receipts.

ASEAN countries contribute about 70% of overall tourist arrivals to Malaysia. Visits dropped to 18.million in 2018 compared to the 19.4 million in 2017.

Visits from India increased by 8.6% to 600,311 in 2018, which should increase to 683,000 this year.

MATTA announced during the show it has entered a joint venture with Grabini Malaysia Sdn Bhd to develop the association’s ‘Tourism Industry Distribution and Booking Platform.’

The platform will act as an online marketplace for the tourism industry to streamline inventory information from supporting sub-sectors for the benefit of the tourism industry across the country.

The MoU was signed by MATTA president Datuk Tan Kok Liang and Grabini managing director Maheswaran Chellathurai witnessed by Tourism Malaysia senior director strategic planning Dato’ Haji Zainuddin Abdul Wahab.

The platform will target initially travel agents and later extend to retail sales to consumers. It should be up and running by the fourth quarter of this year.

The signing ceremony took place last weekend during the MATTA Travel Exchange (MTEX) 2019 at Everly Hotel, Putrajaya.

(Source: MATTA and Star Online)