SIBU: High quality healthcare facilities offered by private hospitals are the latest attraction contributing to a rise in tourist arrivals to Sarawak, said Chief Minister Datuk Patinggi Abang Johari Tun Abang Openg.
He said according to healthcare tourists, the high quality of healthcare service was at par with that available in Singapore while the medical fees offered by private hospitals in Sarawak were also reasonable.
“There is an increase in the number of tourists from neighbouring countries, especially Kalimantan (Indonesia), who come to seek treatment and healthcare in private hospitals in the state,” he said when opening the Borneo Cultural Festival (BCF) organised by the Sibu Municipal Council (SMC) at the Sibu Town Square here on Friday.
However, the chief minister did not disclose the number of healthcare tourists from that neighbouring country, stating only that the overall tourist arrivals to Sarawak recorded were 4.8 million people for last year.
With the high quality healthcare service provided by the state’s private hospitals, including in Sibu town, he was confident that healthcare tourists to Sarawak would continue to grow.
Abang Johari said the number of tourists from China visiting Sarawak also recorded a significant increase following the availability of flights between Shenzen and Kuching.
He said the state government was also working closely with low cost carrier airasia to have more direct flights from overseas directly to Sarawak to link major towns, including Sibu to attract more tourists to the state.
Meanwhile he commended SMC on the holding of the annual BCF, from July 19 to 28, which highlighted the unique diversity of the state’s multi ethnic cultures that had been drawing local and international tourists alike. - Bernama