By Christopher Lidom
KUCHING, Dec 7: Minister of Tourism, Creative Industries and Performing Arts (MTCP) Dato Sri Abdul Karim Rahman Hamzah expressed his hope that the upcoming Sarawak-owned airline would introduce new travel destinations for the State.
According to Abdul Karim, since Sarawak is located on an island, the only alternative for tourists to visit the State is by ship or ferry services.
“The only recourse now is airlines, and that is why we are depending on it,” he told a press conference after launching the Sarawak Tourism Board (STB) Integrity Day held at Borneo Convention Centre Kuching (BCCK) here today.
Asked when will the Sarawak-owned airline begin operations, Abdul Karim said he would leave it to the Ministry of Transport Sarawak (MotS), Malaysian Aviation Commission (Mavcom) and Sarawak government to decide.
He believe that the parties involved in the takeover are still doing their due diligence as there is a need to be very careful.
“Once they finalise it, I am very sure we will be briefed about that and that is where the industry players that come under my ministry, STB and regulatory bodies will be brought together to know more about the new routes so that the marketing and promotion can start,” he added.
Meanwhile, Abdul Karim said his ministry also welcomes cooperation from industry players, especially airlines services, to further improve State’s tourism activities.
“That’s why this industry needs great cooperation between the industry players and the airlines out there, including our own airline,” he added.
On Oct 27, Premier Datuk Patinggi Tan Sri Abang Johari Tun Openg said the soon-to-be established boutique-sized Sarawak-owned airline may commence operations in 2024. — DayakDaily