MATTA happy with bus incentives

KUALA LUMPUR, 16 October 2019: The Malaysian Association of Tour and Travel Agents said it welcomes the government’s decision to lower import and excise duties on tourism vehicles ahead of the Visit Malaysia (VM) 2020.

MATTA president Datuk Tan Kok Liang said the industry was especially happy with the incentive for purchasing tour vehicles as many of those used were outdated.

“We are delighted with the accelerated capital allowance for the purchase of completely knocked down (CKD) tour vehicles for two years and a 50% reduction of excise duty for locally assembled vehicles,”

He was commenting on tourism-related subjects linked to the National Budget 2020 tabled last Friday.

Last month, the MATTA president stated on the association website: “Tourists arriving at our airports ought to be transferred to their hotels using modern buses for tour groups, and luxury vans for those travelling with families or friends.

“We should not be operating the same 30-year old vehicles that we used for the Visit Malaysia Year in 1990. But this is what passengers will be getting if the authorities do not review existing policies.”

He said VM2020 should be a year to showcase how Malaysia is ready with new measures to deliver the most welcoming experience for visitors to our country.”

Tan pointed out that easing up on tax and import rules would allow operators a great window of opportunity to replace vehicles at a reduced cost, which was essential to enhance the image of the country during Visit Malaysia 2020.

The MYR1.1 billion allocated to the Ministry of Tourism, Arts and Culture (MOTAC), of which MYR90 million has been earmarked for promotions, should empower MOTAC, he told local media.

MATTA is also pushing for more incentives to spur development of rural tourism for the benefit of local communities; offer attractive incentives and to make Penang and Port Klang home ports for cruise ships.

Malaysia has set a target of 30 million foreign tourist arrivals during the Visit Malaysia Year 2020 with earnings of MYR100 billion.