Ahad, 15 Disember 2013

The Star Online: Nation

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The Star Online: Nation

Shopping to be the mainstay of VMY2014


SUBANG: Shopping and retail tourism will remain a key focus area during the Visit Malaysia Year 2014.

Tourism and Culture Ministry secretary-general Datuk Dr Ong Hong Peng said shopping had traditionally been a subsidiary activity while people travelled but with travel costs going down, the concept had changed.

"People used to shop while travelling to buy souvenirs and gifts but the situation has changed," he said in his address during the launch of 1Malaysia Year End Sale (1MYES) and Visit Malaysia Year 2014 (VMY2014) organised by the Sunway Group here yesterday.

He said retail tourism had become a popular leisure pursuit and statistics from the ministry suggested that it made up a large portion of tourist spending.

"It contributed a total of RM18bil to the country's economy last year," he said.

He noted that the ministry would double its efforts to maintain Malaysia's position as one of the World's top 10 Best Shopping Cities as revealed by CNN Travel, ahead of other well-established cities.

"These accolades have strengthened Kuala Lumpur's position as a shopping paradise not only in the region but the world as well," he said.

With strong participation of industry leaders, such as Sunway Group, the Tourism and Culture Ministry was confident in expanding the inbound tourist market share in tandem with the growth of the Asia Pacific market, he added.

"We are confident of achieving our target of attracting 28 million tourists for VMY 2014 and RM76bil in tourists receipt.

"We should take advantage of the recognition that the country received and double our efforts to develop and stimulate the shopping and tourism sector further.

"Shopping-driven extravaganzas such as 1MYES will remain as one of the central platforms to drive tourism expenditures.

"This 1MYES is a prelude to an even more exciting shopping experience to be held next year, where the best bargains, the best choices, and the best shopping experience in the region will be offered," he said.

On the ministry's future plans, Dr Ong said it will look forward to continuously promoting some 20 to 40 malls where tourists would go for the three annual sales.

Alleged baby rape: Cops say no sign of abuse


PETALING JAYA: Police have not found any criminal elements in the case of the nine-month-old baby girl who was allegedly raped by her neighbour's teenage son.

"There are no criminal elements involved in the case. There were no elements of rape or abuse but the case is still under investigation," Petaling Jaya deputy OCPD Supt Fadil Marsus said.

Confirming that a report had been lodged on the matter, Supt Fadil, however, declined to elaborate further.

Malacca Action Group for Parents in Education (Magpie) highlighted the case after the baby's 27-year-old mother from Taman Desa Ria in Petaling Jaya, claimed that she had found bloodstains on her daughter's diapers when she was cleaning her at their home on Tuesday night.

The shocked mother then checked her daughter for any bodily injuries and saw that the infant was bleeding from her private parts.

The mother then lodged a report at the Dang Wangi police station the same night.

Enough turkeys for all this season


PUTRAJAYA: There will be enough turkeys for everyone this Christmas now that the Department of Veterinary Services has added another farm in Australia as a source for the bird meat.

Agriculture and Agro-based Industry Minister Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob said that local suppliers were allowed to import carcasses, whole birds, bone-in meat, boneless meat and cuts as well as frozen turkeys from the Australian farm Goldfields Turkey Pty Ltd in Victoria.

Currently, suppliers are only allowed to import frozen turkeys from Brazil.

Besides imported turkeys, Ismail Sabri said traders could also get their supplies from local turkey farms.

"There are several turkey farms in Kedah and Penang. Suppliers can contact the department's offices in both states for assistance to purchase the turkeys," he said after sending off a convoy of vehicles laden with food supplies to flood-affected areas in Pahang, Terengganu, Johor and Kelantan on Friday.

The Star had reported on Friday that turkey suppliers in the country were finding it harder to bring in the Christmas favou­rite due to stringent halal certification, hav­ing limited their import options to Brazil only.

Previously, several countries including Australia and the United States supplied turkeys to Malaysia.

Ismail Sabri said that the suppliers could also contact the farmers directly to get their stock of turkeys.

"With both live and frozen turkeys available, there shouldn't be any problem serving this Christmas dish," he said.

Kredit: www.thestar.com.my

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