KOTA KINABALU : The 4th Community Based Tourism Roadshow (CBTR) returns with 19 districts participating from Nov 27 to 29 at Sabah International Convention Centre (SICC) here.
The CBTR, first introduced in 2017, aims to showcase the variety of tourism products available in the respective districts.
The event was put on hold during the past two years due to Covid-19 pandemic.
“This event is not only to showcase the rural tourism products all around Sabah to both the public at large and tourism industry players.
“But to leverage the expertise and know-how of industry players to promote and package those rural tourism products to both domestic and international markets,” said Assistant Tourism, Culture and Environment Minister Datuk Joniston Bangkuai during a press conference at Sabah Tourism Board (STB) here.
“Apart from that, this could be a meeting opportunity between tourism operators and rural tourism product operators promoting rural tourism destinations domestically and internationally.
“The trend for community-based tourism is soaring; in 2018, total receipts for homestays alone was 6.23 million,” said Joniston who is also STB Chairman.
During the three-day roadshow, which is held in conjunction with the World Tourism Conference (WTC) 2022 from Nov 28 to 30, there will be a total of 56 booths with 50 booths selling local handicrafts and local cuisines.
Among the participants for the roadshow are Designated Areas for Sustainable Tourism (DASTA) Thailand, three state ministries namely Rural Development Ministry, Industrial Development Ministry and Agriculture and Fisheries Ministry.
The rest are Federation of Rural Tourism Association Sabah (FERTAS), Sabah Homestay Association, Kraftangan Malaysia, local Malaysia participation from Tourism Johor and Sarawak as well as Sabah Parks.
The highlight for the three-day event will be the panel sessions with a combination of panellists representing academics, policy makers and practitioners, he said.
One of the sessions, will be by an invited panellist from Thailand ( DASTA) who will be sharing about sustainable tourism administration in Thailand.
There will also be cultural performances from various districts in Sabah, traditional games and colouring competitions for children. The public is welcome to attend, he said.
“Beside the exhibition, I hope that all districts participating can fully benefit from the forum and should review significant challenges and also share success stories.
“We need to work together to achieve our target, which is to place Sabah as an exemplary rural tourism destination and adhere to ASEAN Tourism Standards by 2030.
“The synergy between public, private, and local communities would enhance rural tourism initiatives,” said Joniston.
Also present were STB chief executive officer Noredah Othman, its deputy Julinus Jimit, FeRTAS president Walton Kandayon and Universiti Malaysia Sabah’s Borneo Tourism Research Centre director Dr Balvinder Kler.