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Losing RM45 billion is scary, really. Please get it back, get more.

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Tourism industry is not in a good shape for the past many months. No inbound tourists from overseas, no local tourists because everyone must stay at home. Now that it’s Recovery Movement Control Order (RMCO), some of these tourism players may get some business again. It will not recover suddenly yeah. Unemployment number shot up to 5.3% in month of May. Perhaps June may see a similar number. Please do understand that jobs are the base for everything, even the property market for Greater Kuala Lumpur and other bigger cities.

This following news show how bad the tourism industry is. “Malaysia tourism faces up to RM45 billion losses due to COVID-19.” (click to read the article) Tourism, Arts and Culture Minister Datuk Seri Nancy Shukri says that Malaysia ’s tourism sector is estimated to suffer losses amounting to RM45 billion this year as a result of the closure of the country’s borders due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

She said, “Based on the ministry’s statistics, for the period of January to March this year, international tourist spending recorded a decrease of 41.5 per cent from RM21.4 billion in 2019 to RM12.5 billion, this year.” She shared some good news. She said that some hotels had begun to record high occupancy rate of up to 75 percent after the domestic tourism segment starts moving again. Do read here for the full article.

I think what most of the players in the tourism industry wants to hear is how soon could we implement the travel bubble which has been talked about for a few weeks now. Truth is, there is pent-up demand in many of these countries which has managed to control COVID-19 better than many countries outside Asia. the first country with all the SOPs and approvals in place may see a good recovery in the tourism sector.

I know everyone wants to tell me that COVID-19 is still around. Let’s just note that this statement that COVID-19 is still around will still be around for the next 12-18 months if not more. Sorry yeah, it depends on what we do and how we do it. It is not only going back to normal when COVID-19 is eradicated. If we do that, I am not sure how many things we would also need to save everyone from. Remember yeah, just these lockdowns for a few months and we have seen the unemployment spike. Thanks for understanding.

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Next suggested article: Tourism and uncertainty. Not the best friends

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