Permanent secretary to the Ministry of Tourism, Arts and Culture, Mr Ik Pahon Joyik has urged MASWings to add more flights and increase connectivity to the Mulu National Park. Mr Joyik said that MASWings’ refusal to outsource the route to the world-renown park to other airlines is not good for the tourism industry of Sarawak.
He said yesterday to the media:
At the rate it is going, it is not helping the state government in promoting tourism sector due to its poor connectivity. We have a world heritage site but MASWings is not doing enough to assist us in providing more flights there.
The Mulu National Park has been recognised by UNESCO as a world heritage site since 2000.
MASWings to Outsource the Route if it can’t Service it on its Own Properly, Says Ik Pahon
If MASWings is not able to service the route properly on its own and increase connectivity, Mr Joyik has urged the carrier to outsource the service to other airlines.
He has also urged the tourism agencies and the rest of this sector to be more involved in promoting Mulu National Park and Kinabalu National Park as twin package, as this would provide benefits for both of these.
Both Mulu National Park and Kinabalu National Park have been described as the paradise of Borneo. However, we are still not able to capitalize on their huge potential.
The permanent secretary to the Ministry of Tourism, Art and Culture praised the local community for setting up extra homestay for tourists visiting the area, saying:
So far, the Berawans have set up at least 10 homestay near Mulu National Park. This means visitors now have the choice whether to stay in a five star resort or in a longhouse setting.
Ik Pahon, who also serves as the chief executive officer of the Sarawak Tourism Board, also mentioned that the state of Sarawak is planning to welcome half-a-million more visitors this year than it did in 2015, bringing its total tally for 2016 to five million tourist arrivals. Helping the matter greatly when it comes to increasing tourist arrivals in Sarawak is the fact that the state has four nature reserves, 14 wildlife sanctuaries and 35 national parks. All of these span 903,769 hectares combined.