KUCHING: Sarawak will upgrade the infrastructure of national parks, which are frequently visited by tourists and privatise its management.

Chief Minister Datuk Patinggi Abang Johari Tun Openg said this is among the new approaches to develop the tourism industry under the 12th Malaysia Plan beginning 2021 until 2025.

“National parks frequently visited by tourists are the Bako National Park, Semenggoh National Park, Mulu National Park as well as Niah National Park —these are the national parks we are going to upgrade,” he said when officiating the 8th Sarawak Hornbill Tourism Awards 2017/2018 at Borneo Convention Centre (BCCK), here last night.

Abang Johari speaks at 8th Sarawak Hornbill Tourism Awards 2019.

Abang Johari added that all the national parks would be operated and managed by the Sarawak Forestry Corporation (SFC) jointly with the private sector.

Meanwhile, Minister of Tourism, Arts and Culture Datuk Abdul Karim Rahman Hamzah said, in conjunction with the Visit Malaysia Year 2020, Sarawak is targeting to receive five million tourist arrivals.

“In order to achieve the target, we have to double our efforts and boost Sarawak’s own campaign ‘Sarawak, More To Discover’ besides leveraging on VMY 2020 campaign,” he said.

As of October this year, Sarawak had received a total of 34,100 health visitors and this has generated RM47.6 million in tourism receipts. – Bernama