Bruneians spend a whopping RM1.52B in M’sia in six months

Azlan Othman

Bruneians’ expenditure in Malaysia reached RM1.52 billion in the first six months of this year as 627,112 visits to the country from the sultanate were recorded, Tourism Malaysia revealed last Friday.

This made travellers from the sultanate among the top five international tourist arrivals for Malaysia. However, visits from Brunei dropped by 85,434 as against 712,546 in the same period last year.

From January to March 2019 alone, Bruneians’ per diem expenditure in Malaysia stood at RM877.3, up by 33 per cent compared to the same period in the previous year.

The average length of stay was 2.5 nights compared to 3.4 nights in the same period last year.

Tourism Malaysia revealed that Malaysia welcomed 13.35 million international tourists and recorded a 6.8 per cent growth in tourist receipts, contributing RM41.69 billion to the country’s revenue during the first half of 2019.

Tourism performance also saw growth in terms of per capita expenditure, rising by 1.9 per cent to RM3,121.6 while the Average Length of Stay (ALOS) climbed by 0.4 nights to 6.2 nights.

The top 10 international tourist arrivals for the first half of 2019 were from Singapore (5,381,566), Indonesia (1,857,864), China (1,558,782), Thailand (990,565), Brunei (627,112), India (354,486), South Korea (323,952), the Philippines (210,974), Vietnam (200,314) and Japan (196,561).

ASEAN arrivals continued to dominate the share of tourist arrivals to Malaysia with a 70 per cent contribution. The medium-haul market and long-haul market occupied a 20.8 per cent share and a 9.2 per cent share respectively.

Overall, the performance of the short-haul, medium-haul and long-haul markets registered positive increase with 4.7 per cent, 7.1 per cent and 1.8 per cent growth compared to the first half of 2018.

The top five countries with highest receipts were Singapore (RM11.56 billion), China (RM7.09 billion), Indonesia (RM5.71 billion), Thailand (RM1.70 billion) and Brunei (RM1.52 billion).

The top five countries with highest expenditure per capita were Saudi Arabia (RM11,376.90), the United Kingdom (RM5,241.5), Canada (RM4,593.1), China (RM4,546) and the United States (RM4,537.90).

The top five countries with the highest average lengths of stay were Saudi Arabia (10.5 nights), France (8.7 nights), Germany (8.3 nights), Netherlands (8.1 nights) and Canada (7.7 nights).

Tourism, Arts and Culture Minister Datuk Mohamaddin Ketapi said the number of tourist arrivals to Malaysia had also increased by 4.9 per cent to 13.35 million in the first six months this year from only 12.73 million previously.

Asked whether the target of 28.1 million tourist arrivals for this year could be achieved, the minister said based on the positive trend and the peak season from July to September, where most people in Europe and the Middle East would go on summer holidays, it is still possible.

“It is very positive (the trend). At the moment we have over 13 million, and it is not the peak time yet. We have several more months, we can achieve that,” he added.