DestinationsMATTA says measures do not address the challenge of staff retention

Agents feel stimulus package falls short of expectations

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Malaysian agents’ association fears for the jobs of those working in tourism businesses.
Malaysian agents’ association fears for the jobs of those working in tourism businesses. Photo Credit: RAVINDRAN JOHN SMITH /iStock / Getty Images Plus

KUALA LUMPUR - The Malaysian Association of Tour and Travel Agents (MATTA) has been left less than impressed with the government’s Economic Stimulus Package, announced by Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin.

What will happen after the handouts are fully given out by May when employees find themselves out of a job because the businesses they used to work for have been forced to close shop?– MATTA President, Datuk Tan Kok Liang

MATTA said the package failed to address the key issue of protecting jobs.

MATTA President Datuk Tan Kok Liang said the association was thankful the hardcore poor had been given a temporary lifeline, “however, the package has failed to meet the needs of tourism enterprises, particularly SMEs, and does not address the problem of staff retention”.

“What will happen after the handouts are fully given out by May when employees find themselves out of a job because the businesses they used to work for have been forced to close shop?” Mr Liang added.

MATTA said the tourism industry, which employs 3.5 million people and contributes 15.2% to the nation's GDP, saw revenues fall by a 90% in March and was looking at a near total-loss in business for the months of April, May and June.

“Many businesses, especially SMEs, may have no choice but to start retrenching employees - a move that will have a long-lasting ripple effect on many other industries,” MATTA said.

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