Boston, MA -- (SBWIRE) -- 07/10/2013 -- Malaysia enjoys a strong position in global tourism and was ranked the ninth most visited country in the world by the United Nations World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) in 2011. The growth in Malaysian tourism was driven by government initiatives which aim to promote tourism in the country and increase investment in tourism infrastructure development. Malaysia's tourism sector has been important in driving the country's economic and social development since the late 1990s and has emerged as the second-largest foreign exchange earner after manufacturing for the country. According to the World Travel and Tourism Council (WTTC), the direct contribution of the sector to the country's GDP stood at 6.9% in 2012 and is forecast to increase to 7.5% by 2017.
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- Malaysia has traditionally been a popular destination for tourists in the Asia-Pacific region and this has been reflected in the country's relatively high volume of inbound tourists. The number of international visitors to the country increased steadily from 22.1 million in 2008 to 25.0 million in 2012. The five main countries from which Malaysia's inbound tourist arrivals originate are Singapore, Indonesia, Thailand, China and Brunei.
- The Malaysian government is committed to further developing the country's tourism in collaboration with private companies. For example, the government set the target of '2020:36:168', which states that, by 2020, Malaysia expects to record 36 million tourist arrivals and MYR168 billion in tourist receipts. Based on this target, the government expects the tourism sector to grow by three times its current size and contribute a weekly tourist expenditure of MYR3 billion to the country's GDP in 2020.
- Domestic tourism expenditure increased from MYR16.1 billion (US$4.8 billion) in 2008 to MYR39.7 billion (US$13.0 billion) in 2012, after recording a CAGR of 25.32% during the review period. Retail held the largest share of total expenditure in 2012, followed by transportation and foodservice. Domestic tourism expenditure is expected to increase at a CAGR of 13.92% over the forecast period, to post a total expenditure of MYR76.2 billion (US$24.9 billion) in 2017.
- Malaysia has become a key destination for Middle East tourists due to its Islamic heritage. International arrivals from the Middle East recorded the highest CAGR of 9.64% of any region in the review period. Travelers from the Middle East are also high-spenders which bodes well for tourism receipts.
Companies Mentioned in this Report: Malaysian Airline System Berhad, AirAsia Berhad, FlyFirefly Sdn Bhd, AirAsia X Sdn Bhd, MASwings Sdn Bhd, Tune Hotels Sdn Bhd, CITITEL Hotel Management Sdn Bhd, Grand Hyatt Malaysia, YTL Hotels & Properties Sdn Bhd, Four Seasons Malaysia, ORIX Car Rentals Sdn Bhd, Avis Malaysia, Mayflower Car Rental, Hertz Car Rental Malaysia, Malaysian Harmony Tour & Travel, Forever Travel Service Sdn Bhd, Golden Deluxe Travel Service Agency Sdn Bhd, Reliance Shipping & Travel Agencies Sdn Bhd, Mayflower Acme Tours Sdn Bhd
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