Not wise to allow co-ops to venture into tourism
I REFER to the Bernama report “Angkasa wants ministry to review Tourism Industry Act” on July 29.
The Malaysian National Cooperative Movement (Angkasa) is unhappy with the Tourism Industry Act 1992 because the Tour Operating Business and Travel Agency Business (TOBTAB) licence is granted only to private limited (Sdn Bhd) or limited (Bhd) companies.
Angkasa has urged the Tourism and Culture Ministry to review the act, which compels cooperatives to set up subsidiary companies to apply for the TOBTAB licence.
Its president, Datuk Abdul Fattah Abdullah, has requested for Angkasa to be exempted, as cooperatives are business entities and, therefore, do not need to set up subsidiary companies to venture into tourism.
If Angkasa’s request is granted, it will open the floodgates for many to jump on the bandwagon without understanding what the tourism business is all about.
If it is the travel sector that Angkasa is interested, it must be run by experts.
For example, no large corporation has bought over a reputable tour company because it is just a shell, and key personnel can leave any time. It is normal for a large group of staff to leave a company and set up their own, taking along the customers.
It is rare for elected officials or management staff of cooperatives to develop such a bond with customers, or the capability to master the art of inbound or outbound tour businesses. It is much easier to run a retail outlet by