No staggered school holidays says Mohamaddin

KUALA LUMPUR: Tourism, Arts and Culture Minister Datuk Mohamaddin Ketapi said the proposal on staggered school holidays is only his deputy's personal opinion.

He said the proposal raised by Muhammad Bakhtiar Wan Chik had never been discussed at the ministry level.

“If you ask me (on the staggered school holiday proposal), the answer is no,” he told reporters after officiating the Swedish Fashion and Design Stories Exhibition at the National Art Gallery here today.

On Tuesday, Muhammad Bakhtiar proposed staggered school holidays be implemented to spur the tourism sector and to reduce crowds at local tourist hotspots.

On another matter, Mohamaddin said China's tourism policy introduced a few years ago encouraging its citizens to visit domestic tourism destinations was among the factors that contributed to the drop in Chinese tourist arrivals in Malaysia during last week's Golden Week break in that country.

“That Golden Week is only one week (Oct 1 until 7) where people in China are encouraged to tour within their country instead of going out.

“It is not only Malaysia but the whole world will be seeing Chinese tourists numbers going down a bit but it is only for one week,” he said.

It was reported yesterday that tourist arrivals from mainland China to Malaysia dropped by 30 to 35% during last week's Golden Week break as compared with the same period last year.

About 180,000 Chinese tourists visited Malaysia during the week-long China's National Day in 2017.

Meanwhile, the one-month Swedish Fashion and Design Stories Exhibition until Nov 11 is jointly organised by the Embassy of Sweden in Malaysia and the National Art Gallery.

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The exhibition at the National Art Gallery features 58 images in print and product display by sponsor brands including IKEA, Daniel Wellington and Assa Abloy. — Bernama

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