Malaysia To Help Enhance IMT-GT Cooperation By Leveraging On Islamic Tourism Potential
This month will mark a notable occasion for the Indonesia-Malaysia-Thailand Growth Triangle (IMT-GT) institution as the IMT-GT Webinar: Understanding Muslim-friendly Tourism is set to take place, organised by Islamic Tourism Centre (ITC) with the support of the Ministry of Tourism, Arts and Culture, Malaysia
“The past weeks have seen Islamic Tourism Centre forging greater cooperation and partnerships towards developing the Islamic Tourism model and Muslim-friendly tourism and hospitality (MFTH) branding domestically, regionally and worldwide. That is also courtesy of the growing interest by our fellow tourism industry partners in tapping into the Muslim travel market,” said Dato’ Dr. Mohmed Razip Haji Hasan, ITC’s Director-General.
“In the past 2 months, we have held or taken part in more than half-a-dozen knowledge sharing sessions to promote the lucrative potentials that those segments hold. We take note that the increasing interest is not just a momentum boost to work and deliver better, but an acknowledgement of the fact that more destinations are open and ready to embrace the Muslim travel market,” he continued.
He said that the Indonesia-Malaysia-Thailand triangle stood to gain from promoting the sub-region as an Islamic Tourism destination. “This intellectual discourse will be among the first steps towards achieving a common goal between the three IMT-GT member countries in tapping into the Muslim tourist market through having a broader perspective and understanding of the MFTH concept and standards of Muslim-friendly hospitality within the IMT-GT sub-region.”
The Muslim travel market is noted for two key behavioural patterns — an inclination to spend more and the tendency to have longer stays. Moreover, two essential needs are important for this niche segment — availability of Halal food and provision of prayer facilities. Malaysia’s recent success as the top destination in the Muslim travel market, as reported in the Global Muslim Travel Index 2021, serves as a reference for other destinations wanting to tap into the Muslim tourist market.
With the COVID-19 pandemic shining a light on health protocols, the MFTH concept which instils the values of safety, wellbeing, and hygiene, becomes more significant and relevant to the successful reopening of tourism, providing added assurance to potential tourists.
“To promote the necessary set of knowledge and skills to our industry partners who are looking to tap into this market, ITC, as an internationally-recognised Centre of Excellence on all things MFTH, operates via its wide set of roles like research, training, standards and certification to see that they are equipped and ready,” he said.
The webinar is set for this coming 19 Aug for government officials and private sector of the IMT-GT member states. Dato’ Dr. Noor Zari bin Hamat, Secretary-General of the Ministry of Tourism, Arts and Culture, and Chairman of ITC, will give the opening address
Providing insightful perspectives from academia will be Prof. Dr. Mohd. Hafiz Mohd Hanafiah, Associate Professor at the Faculty of Hotel & Tourism Management of MARA University of Technology, who will speak on Muslim-Friendly Tourism and Hospitality from the perspective of demand and supply of products and services.
Meanwhile, Mr. Ahmad Faizal Iskandar, Director of Sales at Sunway City Kuala Lumpur Hotels, will share the hospitality group’s experiences in implementing Muslim-Friendly Hospitality, providing an industry perspective on the concept.
Mdm. Fakheezah Borhan, Senior Assistant Director, Standardisation Division, Department of Standards Malaysia, will also be presenting a topic concerning standards with regards to Muslim-friendly hospitality services.
Datuk Mohd Ilyas Zainol Abidin, Executive Chairman, Ample Prospects Sdn Bhd, on the other hand, will talk about venture opportunities, strategies and potentials in targeting the Muslim travel market for non-Muslim destinations.
For registration, scan the QR code in the promotional poster, or click on this link:
Having taken off in 1993, IMT-GT is a strategic effort of international economic cooperation among the three nations involved in various fields including education, culture, human resource, trade and investment & halal and tourism