The government policy of visa-free entry for visitors from China and India was appreciated by the Deputy Chief Minister, Datuk Christina Liew throughout 2020.
She said that, because of the 2020 Visit Malaysia Year declaration (VM2020), the suited and timely change will help the growth of tourist arrivals from both countries.
"I welcome the Government's announcement as Minister of Tourism, Culture and the Environment that tourists from China and India will visit Malaysia without tourist visa until 31st Dec next year.
"Sabah, in particular, may foresee an increase in the number of visitors from those nations with this 15-day visa-free trip to Malaysia concession.
"Sabah does not have direct airways to Kuala Lumpur, Singapore or Brunei, but would still be a gateway for visitors to enter Land Below the wind while Sabah does not have any direct air flights from India. Thus, next year's visits by Indians and Chinese will hopefully see an increasing trend, "she said Sunday in a statement.
The statement was signed by Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad, exercising the functions of the Home Minister. Throughout 2020, tourists from China and India can enter Malaysia for up to 15 days, either individually or through travel agencies in each country, using their electronic travel and information system.
Three months after the registration, these tourists will travel to the country. In order to secure a piece of tourism, Liew encouraged tourists in Sabah to use the government's offer in order to draw more visitors to Sabah.
As of October this year, she said that figures from the Sabah Tourism Board (STB) show an increase in Chinese and Indian arrivals respectively at 3.1pc and 19.3pc.
"STB is going to continue to encourage China in order to seek more MICE business and to expand the Sabah nature and adventure tourism. STB is going to do more.
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