ITC & JAKIM Collaborate Towards Development Of Human Capital in Islamic Tourism

Islamic Tourism Centre (ITC), an

agency under the Ministry of Tourism, Arts & Culture Malaysia (MOTAC) – overseeing

matters pertaining the development of Islamic Tourism for Malaysia – is pleased to

share another milestone in its 12-year history to date 24 Aug 2021 marked a momentous occasion for ITC where it signed Memorandum
of Understanding (MoU) with the Department of Islamic Development Malaysia (JAKIM)

The MoU focuses on human capital development in the Islamic Tourism industry & the enhancement of Islamic Tourism-related programmes and curriculum in tertiary
education. Signatories to the MoU were Directors-General of ITC and JAKIM, Dato’ Dr.
Mohmed Razip Haji Hasan and Datuk Abdul Aziz Jusoh, respectively.

The event also saw the presence of Institut Pengajian Islam dan Dakwah Sabah

(IPDAS), a body under JAKIM. As an institution of learning providing tertiary education
in Islamic studies, this will allow IPDAS to enhance their academic curriculum where
Islamic Tourism is concerned as aspired by the MoU

That flows from the fact that IPDAS had undergone a restructuring in December 2018,
which will now see the institution offer new programmes such as the Diploma in Islamic
Tourism, Diploma in Creative Teachings, Diploma in Digital Teachings, and Bachelor of
Contemporary Teachings, among others

Those new additions will go along with existing programmes being offered by IPDAS at
present, in the certificate, foundation and diploma levels, such as the Certificate of

Foundation in Islamic Studies and Teachings (SAPID), Certificate of Islamic Studies

(SPI) and the Diploma in Islamic Teachings (DDI)

In the non-curricular aspect, the MoU will also see the provision of training services by

ITC to IPDAS’ academic staff and industry players to enhance their understanding of

Islamic Tourism and Muslim-Friendly Tourism and Hospitality (MFTH), and the holding

of seminars on curriculum development and conducting of research in the mentioned


Speaking at the online event, Secretary-General of MOTAC, Dato’ Dr. Noor Zari Hamat,
who is also the Chairman of ITC, noted: “I applaud such an initiative by parties privy to
the MoU, namely, ITC, an agency under my ministry, and JAKIM, on the road to human
capital development.”

“As we know, the Muslim travel market is growing, and the trend is expected to

accelerate in the coming years. To cater to the rising demand for Muslim-friendly

tourism and hospitality products and services, one of the many aspects which needs
focus is capacity-building, such as curriculum development for institutions of higher
learning, to ensure a sustainable and inclusive human resource,” he added

Dato’ Dr. Noor Zari opined that such a collaboration was also vital to build a

knowledge-based economy whilst creating a sustainable and competitive business

environment, which will benefit society as a whole.
“I would also like to reiterate that education and tourism complement each other very
much because whilst education creates capable and knowledgeable human capital,
tourism will be the one to utilise these resources for industry development and in turn,
economic prosperity and national progress.”

He further explained: “In 2019, tourism contributed to 15.9% of the national gross

domestic product (GDP), making it the third-largest sector. Thus, tourism is a key

industry in Malaysia as it is also the source of income for many Malaysians out there.

Although tourism has been severely impacted by the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, Malaysia is confident that its tourism sector will be able to pull through and emerge from

this pandemic evolved, as a more inclusive and sustainable one.”

“Malaysia was recently named the best destination of choice in the Muslim travel

market, by the MasterCard-CrescentRating Global Muslim Travel Index (GMTI) 2021.

This serves as a solid base for our national tourism stakeholders and industry players to
work on, towards better development of Islamic Tourism in Malaysia, as more and more
entities are now showing a growing interest in tapping into the said market.”

Dato’ Dr. Noor Zari also viewed that Malaysia’s position as a multiracial, multiethnic & multiconfessional nation makes it a melting pot, which adds value to its list offerings & attractions for all tourists, including Muslim tourists. In addition, the availability of Halal
food everywhere and provision of prayer facilities, such as ablution facilities, musollahs,
prayer mats and the indication of the Qiblat sign will enrich the stay and experience of
Muslim tourists

“All in all, Malaysia must continue to lead the way for all things Islamic Tourism and

Muslim-Friendly Tourism and Hospitality, and always strive to be the best among other
nations out there because the competition is growing as observed where more nations
are now open to embracing MFTH in their respective tourism sectors.”

“MOTAC, via ITC, is ever ready to assist tourism partners out there who wish to

leverage on the niche but lucrative potentials of the Muslim travel market as we offer a

wide range of services, from research and training, to standards and certifications. That

goes along with the fact that ITC is also known worldwide as the leading Centre of

Excellence, and a point of reference for Islamic tourism and MFTH,” he concluded

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