TAIPEI, 7 September 2022 – The Malaysian Friendship and Trade Centre in Taipei together with Tourism Malaysia Taipei Office organised a hybrid seminar on three tourism-related topics targeted at the tourism industry players in Taiwan.
Held at The Howard Plaza Hotel Taipei on 7th September 2022, the seminar focused on promoting a better understanding of what Malaysia has to offer to the Taiwanese. Apart from being the top Muslim-friendly travel destination, Malaysia is also known for its medical tourism and its special Malaysia My Second Home (MM2H) programme.
Ms. Sharon Ho, President of the Malaysian Friendship and Trade Centre together with Mr. David Tsao E-Shu, Deputy Director of the International Affairs Division of Taiwan Tourism Bureau attended the seminar and delivered their welcome remarks for the opening session.
Mr. Fitra Mohd Ali, Director (Covering) of Industry Development from Islamic Tourism Centre (ITC), was the first speaker on the topic: Malaysia as a Muslim-Friendly Travel Destination. He addressed that Malaysia was chosen as one of the top travel destinations for Muslim travellers by Mastercard-CrescentRating Global Muslim Travel (GMTI) 2022’s report, closely followed by Turkey, Saudi Arabia, and Indonesia in joint 2nd position. Malaysia remained the top-ranked destination in the GMTI as it had been since the launch of the index in 2015. In 2019, Malaysia received 5.32 million arrivals of Muslim tourists with receipts of up to RM16.72 billion.
Malaysia possesses all the necessary components as a Muslim tourist destination with an abundance of halal food, prayer and washing facilities, family-friendly entertainment, and Muslim-friendly services together with Islamic attractions and tourism products. These features not only cater to the demands of Muslim visitors but also allow non-Muslim visitors to enjoy Malaysia’s charms.
Over the years, there have been many ongoing collaborations and initiatives between ITC and industry players, including research, seminars, workshops, and industry development programmes, to build Malaysia’s reputation in the global Islamic tourism industry.
The second topic was covered by Ms. Alice Ong, Director of North Asia Markets from Malaysia Healthcare Travel Council (MHTC) with the title: Forging Resilience for Malaysia’s Medical Tourism Especially for Post COVID-19 Economy Recovery. She stated that MHTC as an agency under the Ministry of Health in Malaysia was established to promote the Malaysian medical tourism sector by organising industry cooperation and establishing fruitful domestic and international public-private partnerships. In 2019, Malaysia received 1.22 million arrivals for healthcare travellers with RM1.7 billion in revenue.
Malaysia has won numerous awards for “Medical Travel Destination of the Year,” which is acknowledged as Asia’s centre for fertility and cardiology and is now referred to as the “Miracle of World Healthcare.”
The final speaker was Peter Peng, Chief Operating Officer of Malaysia My Second Home (MM2H) discussing the topic: Malaysia is a Perfect Country Not Only for Holiday, But Also Suitable for Other Business Purposes. He stated that the Malaysian government-sponsored scheme primarily enables foreigners who satisfy specific requirements to extend their stay in Malaysia with multiple-entry visas. No matter their race, religion, gender or age, residents of all nations recognised by Malaysia are eligible for the programme and participants are allowed to bring their spouses and unmarried children under the age of 21 as dependents.
Malaysia, as a multiracial and multilingual country, offers an abundance of family-friendly amenities for parents and kids including theme parks, jungle trails, sports, water sports, and international-standard golf courses. Besides that, Malaysia is also known for its shopping experience, from high-end couture to ethnic handicrafts and the internationally-acclaimed pewter ware. In addition, Malaysia offers affordable access to the best healthcare and top-notch education for international tourists and students. Until 2019, the total number of approved participants for MM2H programs is 48,471.