Workshop focusses on community-based tourism opportunities

|    Danial Norjidi    |

THE Tourism Development Department in collaboration with the Ministry of Home Affairs (MoHA) through the Mukim and Village Consultative Council Division held a Community-Based Tourism workshop yesterday.

A total of 70 mukim and village consultative council members participated in the workshop, launched by Deputy Permanent Secretary (Tourism) at the Ministry of Primary Resources and Tourism (MPRT) Wardi bin Haji Mohammad Ali.

The deputy permanent secretary said, “Community-based tourism is one of the major potentials in helping ensure tourism products and industries in the country become more sustainable.

“Most of the tourism products and attractions in the country are based on ecotourism and cultural tourism and national heritage,” he shared, noting that this cultural tourism and national heritage are highlighted by the ethnic groups in the country and the communities in the villages who have their own uniqueness to be exhibited in community-based tourism.

“The MPRT through the Tourism Development Department will continue to develop new tourism products to be promoted. Insya Allah, the tourism products to be promoted this year include community-based tourism products which will be carried out in stages according to priority,” he continued.

Deputy Permanent Secretary (Tourism) at the Ministry of Primary Resources and Tourism (MPRT) Wardi bin Haji Mohammad Ali in a group photo with workshop participants, facilitators and other attendees. – SIM YH

“It is hoped that this effort will help accelerate the growth of sustainable community-based tourism especially in mukim and village consultative councils to actively and directly support the tourism sector in the country.

“Among the positive things contributed by community-based tourism is that it can support mukim and village consultative council members generate income and empower the local economy based on various product sales, handicrafts and services to tourists. It is also expected to generate employment opportunities for locals, especially in the mukims and villages involved,” added the deputy permanent secretary.

One of the aims of the workshop was to share ASEAN standards for community services such as homestay. Workshop participants were also briefed on measures and approaches to produce the ‘One Village One Product’ (1K1P) which is coordinated by the MoHA, and also listened to some of the experiences and best practices shared by local community-based tourism operators who won ASEAN Community Based Tourism Award in Vietnam in January earlier this year.

According to a press release, the workshop is expected to provide encouragement to community-based tourism operators to strive to achieve ASEAN-level recognition, meet ASEAN standards and qualify themselves to be nominated for the prestigious ASEAN Community Based Tourism Award, which is a platform for wider recognition and publicity at a regional level.

Brunei Darussalam will be the host for the ASEAN Tourism Forum 2020 ministerial meetings and TRAVEX, which will take place on January 12-16, 2020 and will provide opportunities to introduce existing and new tourism products to tourists. Community-based tourism will be one of the products highlighted during the meetings and forums.