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Press Collections 25 August 2009
Promote bazaars at info centres, hotels: STF
 

Ramadan bazaars have potential to attract many tourists

KUCHING: Ramadan bazaars should be promoted at tourist information centres and hotels in order to realise their potential as tourism product, Sarawak Tourism Federation (STF) president Wee Hong Seng said yesterday.

He added Ramadan bazaars should also be included as one of the events in the tourism calendar to attract more tourists to visit and experience the scenario during the fasting month.

“Permanent Ramadan bazaars in Satok and India Street, for example, have the potential to attract many tourists with the diversity of food and other items found there.

“As we all can see now, these bazaars not only cater for the Muslims who fast during Ramadan, but also frequented by people of other races and faiths because they are attracted to what they can find there (at the bazaar).

“If there are effective promotions in hotels, tourist information centres and tourism calendar, I’m confident that tourists from outside the state and Malaysia will also be attracted to the Ramadan bazaars,” he said when contacted yesterday.

Wee was asked to comment on the suggestion made by Deputy Tourism Minister Dato Sri Sulaiman Abdul Rahman Taib to turn Ramadan bazaars into new tourism products as these places could be tourist attractions.

Sulaiman was quoted in yesterday’s news reports as saying that Ramadan bazaars are unique and found only in Malaysia, and these places could attract tourists through aggressive and dynamic promotions.

Meanwhile, Assistant Minister in the Chief Minister’s Department (Islamic Affairs) Datuk Daud Abdul Rahman also welcomed the suggestion as it could lead to increase in tourist arrivals during the fasting month of Ramadan.

He said these bazaars enabled tourists to sample the food and delicacies of the various races and places in the country.

He nonetheless felt that these bazaars needed upgrading in terms of facilities and stall alignment before they were turned into tourist attractions.

“By turning Ramadan bazaars into the country’s tourism product, we can attract many tourists especially those who are Muslims and also those coming from Islamic countries.

“They would want to come to the bazaars to enjoy and sample the many food and delicacies which are sold at very reasonable prices,” he added.

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