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KUANTAN: The Pahang government is strategizing initiatives to attract domestic and international tourists, eyeing 13.5 million arrivals this year. Pahang's tourist arrivals totaled 13.2 million up to Dec 31 last year, up from 10.18 million in 2022 and two million in 2021, when the country's borders were closed due to Covid-19 restrictions. State Unity, Tourism and Culture Committee chairman Leong Yu Man said the state's tourism strategy included holding familiarisation trips for international and domestic travel agents to popular attractions in all 11 districts in Pahang. She said Tourism Pahang would participate in roadshows around the country and hold the inaugural Malaysia International Tourism (MIT) Expo Pahang this year.  "The MIT will be held in Kuantan between Oct 8 and 10. The tourism fair will feature booths that allow people to obtain firsthand information on unique destinations and products in Pahang.

"Tourism Pahang has listed 41 events on the Pahang tourism calendar this year, including Southeast Asia's longest-running international bird race event, the Fraser's Hill International Bird Race, as well as the Royal Pahang Billfish International Challenge. "Plans are underway to introduce several international tourism events this year," she said at a press conference here today. Leong said besides focusing on tourist arrivals and promotion campaigns, the state government would also hold specially tailored programs for stakeholders.

"Tour guides will be allowed to join training and refresher courses to update their knowledge and skills. "Short courses on digital marketing and customer service will be provided to tourism industry players. "Besides promoting Pahang as a favorite holiday destination, we want to ensure all stakeholders are equipped with skills, competencies, and digital knowledge to offer top-class services," Leong said last year, tourists spent about RM11.89 billion in Pahang, up from RM9.1 billion in 2022 and RM1.9 billion in 2021. She said Genting Highlands remained the most visited destination in Pahang, recording 8.1 million visitors last year, with state capital Kuantan in second place at 2.18 million visitors and Cameron Highlands in the third spot at 1.36 million visitors. Source - NST

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