Pangkor Island will be the new tax-free zone destination to realize the true potential of the resort in Perak waters. Finance Minister Lim Guan Eng said the government also provided tax-free facilities to shopkeepers at Swettenham Port, near Penang.
He said the move was to encourage the cruise tourism sector on Pearl Island, thus generating additional revenue to the national economy.
"The status of Langkawi Island as a tax-free zone will also, be expanded," he said when presenting the 2019 Budget themed 'Powerful Malaysia, Dynamic Economy, Peaceful People' at the Dewan Rakyat today.
Guan Eng, announcing the initiative to boost the tourism industry, said the industry accounted for 14.9 percent of Gross Domestic Product (GDP) or RM201.4 billion in 2017.
Given the sector's importance in generating foreign currency revenue, he said the government would focus on the Ministry of Tourism, Arts and Culture's target of bringing in 30 million tourists, contributing RM100 billion to the country's economy by 2020.
"To support this aspiration, a grant of RM100 million will be provided to private companies for international tourism promotion and marketing programs to increase tourist arrivals," he said.
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