KUALA LUMPUR, Jan 8 — Keen to welcome back travellers from China, its top trading partner after three years, Putrajaya will station Mandarin-speaking officers at international airports nationwide to smoothen their arrival process.
Tourism, Arts and Culture Minister Datuk Seri Tiong King Sing said the measures will be taken in anticipation of incoming Chinese tourists who are not well-versed in English or Malay even as Beijing opened its borders for overseas travel today and despite the health authorities apprehension of a new Covid-19 surge.
“The ministry will coordinate this international effort with international airport management nationwide and the Customs Department.
“This will ensure everything is prepared at the country's entry points, and in turn, further ease the entry process for travelers coming from China,” Tiong said on his Facebook page in Malay.
He said his ministry has proposed several measures to make the arrival process more efficient for travellers from China.
“Now, a large number of tourists from China are expected to enter our country for tourism.
“To better receive and welcome the arrival of Chinese tourists, Motac recommends easier entry points in international airports.
“Besides speeding up the process at the customs inspection without affecting travelers from other countries, this step can also highlight Malaysia's friendly nature in welcoming travelers from China,” he said.
Motac is the acronym for Tiong’s ministry.
He added that the health and safety of travellers from China is also a priority following Malaysia's move to tighten its health standard operating procedures to prevent a resurgence in Covid cases as global health experts warn of new emerging variants.