The findings from Sabah’s Regional Tourism Satellite Account (RTSA) play a crucial role in assessing the state’s tourism performance.
“The RTSA will be used by stakeholders to draft policies aimed at boosting tourism activities in Sabah,” said Tourism, Culture and Environment Minister Datuk Christina Liew during the launch of the Sabah RTSA publication at a resort.
Liew’s speech was delivered by her assistant, Datuk Joniston Bangkuai.
Liew expressed hope that the state’s tourism industry players would utilize the RTSA Sabah 2022 as an innovation to advance the tourism sector.
She also expressed confidence in the ongoing collaboration between the Department of Statistics Malaysia (DOSM), Sabah Tourism, Culture and Environment Ministry (KePKAS), Sabah Tourism Board (STB), and other agencies.
She congratulated DOSM, KePKAS, and STB for successfully implementing the Sabah RTSA, aiming to measure the performance of the state’s tourism sector.
As of October 2023, Sabah has welcomed 2.1 million tourists with an estimated tourism expenditure of RM4.42 billion, Liew stated.
“Sabah receives a total of 384 domestic flights with a weekly seat capacity of 63,519. For international flights, there are 105 direct flights to Kota Kinabalu each week, providing 18,962 seating capacity,” she said.
Liew highlighted the importance of air transport in connecting Sabah with potential destinations in the region.
Since the reopening of international borders, the state has experienced encouraging recovery.
However, she noted that the vibrancy of Sabah’s tourism sector is still below the pre-pandemic level when 4.2 million tourists arrived in 2019.
Liew said Sabah expects to reach 2.5 million visitor arrivals by the end of this year, surpassing the initial target of 2.2 million people.