KUALA LUMPUR (May 8): The construction of the Kulim International Airport (LTAK) in Kedah is one of the most important projects which will contribute to the country's tourism industry, says Minister of Tourism, Arts and Culture Datuk Mohamaddin Ketapi.
He said the airport, which is located in the northern part of the country, would attract more tourists from across the border.
"Many tourists from Thailand will enter Kedah. This is one of the gateway for tourists to come in...we will use Kedah as a gateway from the north," he said after launching the Malaysia Tourism City (MTC) at a hotel in the capital yesterday.
Mohamaddin said this when asked to comment on the LTAK project’s impact on the national tourism industry.
Asked on the projected increase in tourists in the country’s north after LTAK was developed, he said: "I do not have the proper figures to tell you at the moment, I think it is just too early.
Bernama had previously reported that Kedah will receive seven mega projects to develop infrastructure and for the welfare of the people involving an allocation of over RM3.2 billion to bring it on par with other developed states.
Economic Affairs Minister Datuk Seri Mohamed Azmin Ali was reported to have said that among the seven mega projects were the construction of the LTAK and the Manufacturing and Logistics Hub at Sidam near Kulim.
Earlier, Mohamaddin in his speech said MTC would further boost the economy of historical state, Melaka.
He said with sites such as the Melaka Jonker Street, A Famosa, Stadthuys, St. Paul’s Church and Christ Church, the ministry was now looking to bring in more international brand names to Melaka to add a dash of trendiness into the mix.
“This is in-line with the Visit Melaka 2019 campaign which is to make Melaka the number one tourist destination and to attract tourists inside and outside Malaysia to visit and stay longer in Melaka,” he said.
Meanwhile, Meridian Bhd executive director Datuk Seth Yap, who is also M101 Holdings Sdn Bhd chief executive officer said Meridian Bhd was today launching the MTC, a 251.76 hectares flagship project, worth approximately RM200 million.
Yap said MTC, which is located in Kuala Linggi, Melaka, will be an integrated tourism destination, with leisure, entertainment, commercial, retail, and residential facilities, among others.
“With MTC, we target to increase another 2 million tourists arrivals and an additional 1.5 million overnight stay tourists in Melaka,” he added.
During the event, Meridian also inked a licensing agreement with Hasbro Inc, the largest toymaker in the world, to develop world’s first Hasbro water theme park. The agreement was secured under Yap’s private entity, M101 Holdings Sdn Bhd.
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