CM: Private sector can help promote S’wak
Chief Minister Datuk Patinggi Abang Johari Tun Openg is proposing for Sarawak Forestry Corporation (SFC) to look into the possibility of engaging the private sector to promote and market the state’s national parks and wildlife.
KUCHING: Chief Minister Datuk Patinggi Abang Johari Tun Openg is proposing for Sarawak Forestry Corporation (SFC) to look into the possibility of engaging the private sector to promote and market the state’s national parks and wildlife.
He suggested that the private sector could look into targeting specific tourists for premium tour packages, and promote the best of what Sarawak’s nature and national parks could offer.
“I would like SFC to look into the possibility to get the private sector to come in, and the private sector is good at promotion and also to find new markets. But for the asset itself, it must comply with the conservation, and that has to be done by our SFC,” he said during SFC’s 16th anniversary dinner, here Sunday.
He said the ‘premium’ tourists
I’m very confident that is the type of tourists we can attract that will give premium revenue to our state. Datuk Patinggi Abang Johari Tun Openg
will be charged accordingly, with the revenue then used to upgrade infrastructures within the state’s national parks.
“I’m very confident that is the type of tourists we can attract that will give premium revenue to our state,” he added.
Abang Johari said his suggestion was because during his past tenure as the state’s Tourism Minister, he encountered a tourist – a birdwatcher – who had come to Bako here just to watch birds.
In his conversation with the tourist, he said he was told the latter had spent a considerable amount of money just to come to the state to watch the various exotic birds here.
“In other words, we have to pay attention to this type of tourists. They have a lot of money, and are willing to spend so much just to see the birds,” he said.
In this regard, Abang Johari stressed the importance of conserving the nature and environment of the state, as it would not only ensure tourists continue to visit Sarawak but also make Sarawak one of the best destinations for nature and wildlife tourism.
“We have to look after our nature. These are some of the attractions that we have, and these people (tourists) who come over here, they are rich people.
“That is the trend now because the world is having a problem where the natural habitats of these animals are declining, and they might go extinct. That is why, thank God, we in Sarawak still have a lot of nature, so we have to look after them properly.”
Earlier, SFC chairman Datu Len Talif Salleh in his speech touched on the declining population of
Sarawak’s indigenous helmeted hornbills as a result of poaching activities.
He said a single casque of the bird could fetch over RM1,000 in the black market in China.
Abang Johari (second right) performs the officiating gimmick for the anniversary dinner, as Len Talif (on Abang Johari’s right) and others look on.