The Ministry of Tourism, Arts and Culture (MOTAC) Johor, Tourism Johor and related agencies under MOTAC Johor organised a townhall session with Tourism Recovery Action Committee (TARC) on 23rd February 2020 at Fraser Place Puteri Harbour, Iskandar Puteri, Johor to safe net the situation caused by COVID-19. The participants were key tourism industry players such as the Hoteliers, Tourism Agencies, Attraction Venue partners, F&B industry and many more from around Johor who were the most badly affected ones economic wise by the current coronavirus pandemic that broke out in Wuhan, China.
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Dr Jevanthini Sathasivam, from Public Department of Health Johor briefed about the basic information on COVID-19 and addressed the misinformation to tackle smaller issues before it snowballs into a much serious one. According to Dr Jevanthini, the Health Ministry was already on toes when the unknown pneumonia-like disease first broke out in Wuhan on 30th December 2019 made the news. By 5th January 2020, the Health Ministry has issued regulations to all hospitals, schools and institutions.
Datuk Musa Hj. Yusof, Tourism Malaysia’s General Director, presented a tactical plan for quick recovery for the industry. One of the main plans is to focus on domestic tourism and ASEAN countries’ tourists which possess lower risks and are second to third in the top 5 tourists that visited Malaysia in the last 10 years.
The session also included concerned businesses affected by their cash flow coming in and how the State and the Federal government would address this issue.
Present to conclude and officiate the townhall session is State Tourism, Women, Family and Community Development Committee chairman, Liow Cai Tung. She stated that a dialogue with the Minister of Finance, Lim Guan Eng to discuss economy stimulating package for the tourism industry was held with heads of industry players the day before at Kota Iskandar where a lot of the concerns were brought forward and would be taken into account before the Federal Government announces its resolution by 27th February 2020.