This should be the ‘Visit Malaysia Year 2014’

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MH370 wallThe unfolding tragedy of Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370 is likely to have an impact on tourism numbers in Malaysia this year, although the effects are being downplayed by the country’s tourism officials.

“We all know accidents happen but that does not mean everything stops. Business must go on and we are here to communicate. The show must go on,” Malaysia Tourism Director General Dato’ Mirza Mohammad Taiyab said. Tourism is the sixth-largest contributor to the country’s economy.

To encourage potential visitors to give the country a try, the Malaysian tourism authority decided to increase its efforts by designating 2014 “Visit Malaysia Year,” complete with hundreds of events and festivals as well as an official mascot. “This is the perfect time to see, feel and experience Malaysia!” the official website announces.

However, the website now opens with a photo of a MAS jet mid-flight with the hashtag #prayformh370 and a link to a transcript of a press briefing by Hishammuddin Hussein, defense minister and acting transport minister, whose performance responding to queries from reporters has not inspired confidence. Overall, the government’s controversial handling of the search for MH370 is threatening to sour feelings about Malaysia among many would-be visitors.

Malaysians had great hopes for 2014. Although the country lacks the obvious appeal of neighbouring Thailand with its famed beaches, with Thailand in turmoil as anti-government protesters disrupted life in the capital Bangkok, Malaysia was well-positioned as a safe, stable Southeast Asian alternative. But if it’s now really the best time “to see, feel and experience Malaysia” remains questionable.

 

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Reading Time: 2 minutes

The unfolding tragedy of Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370 is likely to have an impact on tourism numbers in Malaysia this year, although the effects are being downplayed by the country’s tourism officials.

Reading Time: 2 minutes

MH370 wallThe unfolding tragedy of Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370 is likely to have an impact on tourism numbers in Malaysia this year, although the effects are being downplayed by the country’s tourism officials.

“We all know accidents happen but that does not mean everything stops. Business must go on and we are here to communicate. The show must go on,” Malaysia Tourism Director General Dato’ Mirza Mohammad Taiyab said. Tourism is the sixth-largest contributor to the country’s economy.

To encourage potential visitors to give the country a try, the Malaysian tourism authority decided to increase its efforts by designating 2014 “Visit Malaysia Year,” complete with hundreds of events and festivals as well as an official mascot. “This is the perfect time to see, feel and experience Malaysia!” the official website announces.

However, the website now opens with a photo of a MAS jet mid-flight with the hashtag #prayformh370 and a link to a transcript of a press briefing by Hishammuddin Hussein, defense minister and acting transport minister, whose performance responding to queries from reporters has not inspired confidence. Overall, the government’s controversial handling of the search for MH370 is threatening to sour feelings about Malaysia among many would-be visitors.

Malaysians had great hopes for 2014. Although the country lacks the obvious appeal of neighbouring Thailand with its famed beaches, with Thailand in turmoil as anti-government protesters disrupted life in the capital Bangkok, Malaysia was well-positioned as a safe, stable Southeast Asian alternative. But if it’s now really the best time “to see, feel and experience Malaysia” remains questionable.

 

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