17 December, 2013

Launch Of Genting’s Transformation Plan


Distinguished Guests, Ladies and Gentlemen

It is my great pleasure to be here this afternoon at the launch of Genting’s Transformation Plan. I would like to thank the Chairman and Board of Directors of Genting Malaysia for inviting me to officiate this event.
I foresee Genting’s transformation plan in the integrated resorts segment as a trendsetter and the start of a new era for the tourism industry in Malaysia and I believe all Malaysians are waiting with great anticipation to see the new dimensions of entertainment that Genting will unfold for the delight and pleasure of its clientele.
Ladies and Gentlemen,

The tourism industry has become a key pillar for our nation. Increasingly, tourism has proven to be a catalyst for our country’s development and a key-driver for economic growth. This sustainable and high-yield sector will continue to drive Malaysia’s economy, providing income and job opportunities to the rakyat.
In recent years, the tourism industry has experienced remarkable growth and has emerged as one of the country’s fastest growing economic sectors.
As the second largest foreign exchange earner after manufactured goods and the seventh largest contributor to the Malaysian economy, the tourism industry contributed RM47.2 billion to the Gross National Income last year.
Today, the business volume of tourism is equal to, or even more than that of oil exports, food products and automobiles. In fact, tourism was identified as one of the 12 National Key Economic Areas under the Economic Transformation Programme, whereby we have set our sights on receiving 36 million tourist arrivals and RM168 billion tourist receipts by the year 2020.
As such, the Government, recognizing the potential of this industry, has mapped out a blueprint of targets for the Tourism and Culture Ministry through various initiatives to stimulate a sustainable development for the industry as we head towards achieving high-income status by 2020.
Ladies and Gentlemen,

As you are aware, next year has been declared Visit Malaysia Year. This nation-wide, year-long event is intended to mobilize the entire industry and nation to move up the value chain of tourism product and services offerings while aiming towards placing Malaysia as a top-of-the mind tourist destination. Our target is to achieve 28 million in tourist arrivals and RM76 billion in tourism receipts during this period.
This is certainly not an unachievable target. Last year, we registered 25.3 million tourist arrivals, placing Malaysia as the 10th most visited country under the UN World Tourism Organisation’s top-ten list of countries with highest tourist arrivals.
Looking beyond Visit Malaysia Year 2014, the government is taking measures to improve and upgrade tourist offerings and services to enhance the country’s connectivity to key priority markets.
As such we continue to seek the cooperation of Malaysian companies involved in the hospitality and tourism business to work together with relevant government bodies to ensure that Malaysia as a whole increases its overall competitiveness in this industry.
At the same time, we must be flexible and prepared to adapt to uncertainties that may demonstrate against the resilience of the tourism industry.
Ladies and Gentlemen,

Coming back to the Economic Transformation Programme which I earlier in my speech, the ETP is the Malaysian government’s initiative to engage with, and create value for the private sector.
When opportunities exist for private sector participation, it stimulates private sector growth, which in turn has a roll-on effect of creating jobs, growing domestic demand and generating wealth – all critical elements of a developed nation. Under the ETP, we expect to see the private sector assuming the lead role in fulfilling the growth targets set under the programme.
We are already seeing an influx of international visitors to Malaysia. Countries like China, India, Brazil and the Middle-East are poised to fuel an explosion in international tourism. With an estimated two billion new middle-class consumers expected to come into the markets from these emerging powerhouses over the next two decades, both the government and private sectors need to think about what this will mean for our national economy.
We need to ask ourselves, ‘Are we ready with infrastructures?’, ‘Are we ready to put the investments in?’, ‘Are we ready to absorb the level of growth?’ Instead of focusing only on the number of visitors, we must also look at ways of improving tourism receipts and providing value-added products and services to boost tourist’ spending.
Today Genting Malaysia is offering an answer to the above. Genting’s transformation plan which encompasses the opening of the first international Twentieth Century Fox Park and the planned second Premium Outlet Centre in South East Asia is a prime example of private sector participation under the ETP.
I’m proud to note that they are in fulfillment of four of the 12 Entry Point Projects (EPPs) that have been identified across five themes to enhance our tourism yields. This includes affordable luxury; family fun; events & entertainment and business tourism.
Ladies and Gentlemen,

Tan Sri Lim in his speech earlier mentioned that Genting’s Transformation Plan is an investment in the East Coast Economic Region and transcends that of a purely business nature.
I believe that Genting’s Transformation Plan will help to address the regional economic imbalance in infrastructure and encourage both local and foreign investment flow into the east coast.
The East Coast Economic Region (ECER) is a 12-year initiative which commenced in 2007, geared at developing and transforming the east-coast region into a major internal and local tourism destination, an exporter of resource based and manufactured products, a vibrant trading centre and an infrastructure and logistics hub.
In short, the ECER will be transformed into a ‘distinctive, dynamic and competitive’ investment destination and a developed region. The holistic transformation of ECER by 2020 is to be a region that captures investment of RM110 billion and creating 560,000 jobs.
Under this transformation plan, Resorts World Genting will offer to the ECER infrastructures as well as value-added products and services.
The world-class branded Twentieth Century Fox Park will offer continued dynamic business growth through its exceptional brand of family fun and entertainment.
In addition, this RM5 billion transformation project will provide both high arrivals and high yield to boost the economy in addition to creating thousands of job opportunities.
Ladies and Gentlemen,

We take pride that through the business acumen of Genting Malaysia, we have forged a partnership with a renowned name in the entertainment world, Twentieth Century Fox, to build the world’s first-of-its kind theme park. The Fox brands are popular worldwide because they have earned a reputation for quality, creativity and longevity.
I would like to express my congratulations and thanks to Twentieth Century Fox for recognizing the potential of Malaysia and in placing their full confidence into this venture with Resorts World Genting. Their foray into Malaysian soil will certainly captivate the attention of future foreign investors and pave the way for more foreign investment in our country.
Simon Property Group on the other hand is no stranger to the Malaysian economy. This US-based global leader in retail real estate properties made their mark with the opening of Johor Premium Outlets within the Iskandar Malaysia Economic Region which I had the pleasure of officiating in December 2011.
Having the distinction of being the very first premium outlet in the country and the first of its kind in Southeast Asia, the Johor Premium Outlets has grown within these past two years to become a major shopping destination attracting millions of visitors from Malaysia, Singapore and around the region.
I am told that Johor Premium Outlets opened its second phase expansion last month. I believe that this success has been a major factor towards the planned opening of the second premium outlet centre in the country, the Genting Premium Outlets in Genting Highlands.
Ladies and Gentlemen,

I am confident that Genting Malaysia, being a well-established Malaysian conglomerate with its roots tied to this nation’s history, will continue to help Malaysia position itself as a strong economy in the region and to further etch our name on the world map.
Let me once again congratulate Genting Malaysia on its mega transformation plans. I wish the group every success and all the very best for many years ahead.
Thank you.

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