Abdul Karim: Sport events and tourism a winning combination

Tan (right) presenting an invitation letter to Abdul Karim to close the 2nd Sarawak Short Course Sprint 2022 swimming competition in the presence of the ministry's permanent secretary Nancy Jolhi.

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KUCHING, July 6: Hosting international sport events is a great tool to stimulate and drive economic as well as social and community development in Sarawak.

Minister of Youth, Sports and Entrepreneur Development Dato Sri Abdul Karim Rahman Hamzah said sports has long been acknowledged as a form of tourism product because international tournaments contribute significantly to economic development and tourist traffic at the destination.

“While you (PASC) see it from a competitive angle, we (ministry) see it from many angles. Whenever an international tournament is held, foreign visitors, foreign athletes and sports officials bring in money to the local businesses.

“This is because when they travel to a different country for a sporting event, they are likely to spend money. They will need lodging and transportation which brings revenue to local businesses, and food which brings revenue to local restaurants or food outlets. They will also buy souvenirs to bring back to their hometowns.

“They may take their time to visit other attractions in the city and experience the local culture and history while at the same take plenty of photos to show to their families and people back in their country. So this will help promote our Sarawak,” he said in a statement today.

Abdul Karim mentioned this in commending Power Aquatics Swimming Club (PASC) for organising the 2nd Sarawak Short Course Sprint 2022 swimming competition which will see some 500 participants from Brunei, Indonesia, Thailand, Peninsula Malaysia and Sabah coming to the State.

The organising committee led by president Kapitan Tan Kun Gee paid a courtesy call on Abdul Karim at his office yesterday (July 5).

The event organised in collaboration with Sarawak Sports Corporation (SSC) and supported by the Ministry of Youth, Sports and Entrepreneur Development is scheduled to be held at Pandelela Rinong Aquatic Centre on Aug 13 and 14.

Recognising the potential and opportunities created by sports events, Abdul Karim, who is also Minister of Tourism, Creative Industry and Performing Arts, reiterated that the ministry will always be behind any sports association that wishes to organise international events and ready to assist whenever there is any plan to hold international sports events in Sarawak.

“Sports events not only could contribute significantly to the development of sports, but an international sports event will also help to promote goodwill between nations, between cities and among sports enthusiasts,” he added.

Therefore, Abdul Karim lauded the club and other sports associations for holding international-level sports events in line with Sarawak’s efforts to spur the growth of the local sports and tourism industries. — DayakDaily