En. Rashidi for Homestay Fair in Japan
MINISTRY OF TOURISM AND CULTURE
Y.BRS. MR RASHIDI HASBULLAH
DEPUTY SECRETARY GENERAL (TOURISM)
MINISTRY OF TOURISM & CULTURE
MALAYSIA HOMESTAY FAIR
NISHINOMIYA GARDEN, HYOGO
15-18 JANUARY 2015
Minasan Konnichiwa! (Good Morning Everyone).
Watashi wa dancho no Rashidi desu (I am Rashidi, Head of the Delegation), Yurashiku onegaishimasu.
Welcome to Malaysia Homestay Fair 2015.
Minasan. Thank you for your kind attendance today at the Malaysia Homestay Fair. All of us from Malaysia are very happy to meet with all of you, and we are excited to share with you one of the best ways to experience Malaysia Truly Asia.
The Malaysia Homestay Programme is a programme where tourists have the opportunity to stay with a chosen family, interact and experience the daily life of their homestay family and learn the culture and lifestyle of the rural community in Malaysia. While it is not classified as a lodging facility, a homestay programme provides a far more rewarding way of experiencing Malaysia and the hospitality of our people through our lifestyle, cultural and economic activities.
The programme, in many ways, has helped turn the tourism industry into a major and viable sector and also contributes to the socio-economic development of the local people and the country.
Up until March 2014, a total of 3,486 homestay operators from 170 villages throughout the country have been trained and licensed by the Ministry of Tourism & Culture.
From January to November 2014, the homestay programme recorded 67,490 international participants, an increase of 10.5% compared to the same period in 2013. Out of that, the Japanese are the second largest participants with 14,165 or 21% from the total international participants.
MALAYSIA’s TOURISM PERFORMANCE & INDUSTRY
Malaysia is one of the top ten most visited countries in the world. In fact, Lonely Planet listed Malaysia as one of the top 10 destinations to visit in 2014. We received 25.72 million international tourists in 2013, of which 513,076 are from Japan. For the period of January-October 2014 we recorded 460,774 Japanese tourists which is an increase of 11% compared to the same period in 2013.
In 2014, we celebrated Visit Malaysia Year in a big way, and now that it has ended, we are continuing our promotions with the Malaysia Year of Festivals in 2015. Due to Malaysiaâ??s rich and diverse culture and population, it is only natural that Malaysia Year of Festivals highlight a magical holiday experience with a special emphasis on the various festivals celebrated by Malaysiaâ??s multicultural society.
We would like to welcome you to experience Malaysia Homestay Programme, the best place for you to learn the culture and lifestyle of the rural community in Malaysia.
Malaysia Homestay Programme received the world recognition as the winner of the UNWTO Ulysses Award for Innovation in Public Policy and Governance in 2012.
We bring five homestay operators together with us today. They are Homestay Bougainvillea from Melaka, Homestay Kampung Taman Sedia from Cameron Highlands, Pahang, Homestay Balai Kito from Sabah, Homestay Bario Highlands and Homestay Mongkos, both from Sarawak.
Each homestay programme offers different types of activities depending on the location, but there is always a good mix of cultural activities, food preparation and the opportunity to eat the local cuisine, as well as participation in the localâ??s daily economic activity such as fishing, agriculture and so on. One may learn to perform a traditional dance, play a local musical instrument or prepare a local snack.
In addition, a representative from the Malaysia Railway Tourism Association is here to promote new homestay packages inviting tourists to experience rural life in Malaysia by taking the train. We also have three demonstrators to show demonstration in drawing henna, caricature and batik painting.
Last but not least we also brought our local cultural troupe from Langkawi Homestay Cultural Brigade to showcase the uniqueness of Malaysia to you.
I sincerely hope you enjoy our promotion here until 18 January 2015 and we certainly look forward to welcome you to our warm and friendly country and experience our Homestay programme.