: The East Coast Economic Corridor (ECER) has been given a boost with the launch of a RM5 billion Genting Integrated Tourism Plan (GITP) on Tuesday.
Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak said, the plan was aimed at redeveloping the hotel and casino operator’s Resorts World Genting (RWG).
The mega development will be carried out in phases, thus fulfilling the ECER’s target of attracting investments worth RM110 billion and creating 560,000 jobs within the East Coast.
Phase one involves a RM4 billion development of a 1,300-room three-star hotel adjacent to the First World Hotel. This includes the development of the RM1 billion Twentieth Century Fox theme park and the proposed establishment of the Genting Premium Outlet, the region’s second offering branded goods.
The remaining RM1 billion will be allocated for phase two of the plan which is still at the planning stage.
Najib said, he is confident the opening of the 10-hectare theme park and planned second Premium Outlet will help boost the tourism industry in the country.
He has also called on more private sector involvement at developing the industry further.
"We need to ask ourselves, are we ready with infrastructures? Are we ready to put the investment in? Are we ready to absorb the level of growth? Instead of focusing 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," Najib said.
Meanwhile Genting Malaysia chairman and chief executive Tan Sri Lim Kok Thay said at the GITP’s launch on Tuesday, although Resorts World Genting is a world renowned tourism destination with more than 20 million visitors over the last two years, the company was still not content with its achievement.
As such, the RM4 billion investment under the GITP would be used for the development, expansion, enhancement and refurbishment of hotels, theme park and infrastructure at RWG by 2016.
The government, under the Economic Transformation Programme (ETP) has targeted more than 36 million tourist arrivals in Malaysia with receipts of RM168 billion by 2020.