Penang State Exco for Tourism & Creative Economy, YB Yeoh Soon Hin, officiated ‘The Meeting Show London’ 2022 to relaunch the island’s BELong in Penang Campaign. The BElong in Penang Campaign aims to inculcate optimism and enthusiasm in the Penang business events industry while also laying the groundwork for the state to continue funding hybrid domestic and international clients and events.
According to Penang State Exco for Tourism and Creative Economy, Yeoh Soon Hin, in order to reclaim the trust of tourists, the state needs a strong standard operating procedure (SOP) that ensures their safety while visiting Penang, hence why he initiated the state's first "responsible tourism" campaign in 2020, which will help to control the spread of the Covid-19 virus in the state.
“The resumption of cross-border travel has undoubtedly been aiding the economic recovery while also reinforcing the state's viability and efficiency in the face of an ever-changing global scene. Tourism is one of the most important economic drivers in Malaysia, accounting for a sizable portion of the country's GDP and providing a significant boost to the economy. The reopening of international borders will revitalise the tourist industry and transform it into a thriving economic sector. It will definitely resurrect other enterprises in the industry, as well as provide new business opportunities.,” Said Yeoh.
He firmly believes that the campaign name, when associated with the state's vision of becoming a smart state while continuing to develop its digital economy through Penang2030, will entice more tourists and business event organisers to return to Penang and choose Penang as their next preferred destination for future events.
The BElong campaign's concept revolves around three key messages, notably, uncompromising hospitality at the heart of our Business Events, making Penang ready for the return of tourists, business event travelers and organisers and finally, putting in place all requisite safety and hygiene measures.
According to the Chief Executive Officer of PCEB, Ashwin Gunasekeran, the first two letters BE, which are associated with business events, employ the term 'belong,' which generally signifies having an affinity for a specific place or situation, such as a sense of belonging. “The campaign's goals include sending a positive message that Penang is open for business beginning in 2022, maintaining destination awareness and increasing destination confidence in health and safety measures for corporate events, increasing RFPs and interest in future events to be held in Penang, and potentially increasing job opportunities in the tourism, hospitality, and business events industries in Penang,” said Ashwin.
The business events industry in Penang has been active in updating their products and upgrading their work regardless, exhibiting their resilience and commitment to the industry. The Habitat Penang Hill recently won the ASEAN Sustainable Tourism Award Urban Category 2022 and recognised by UNESCO as Malaysia’s third biosphere reserve.
Penang is eagerly anticipating the business travelers’ return and is certain that everyone is missing Penang's fantastic food, welcoming warmth, and breathtaking views and sights. Penang, the melting pot of heritage, culture and nature also strongly believes it is timely for this new campaign to catapult at this point in time, as many countries are opening their borders and mitigating the event planning.
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