Friday, April 11, 2014

10th World Harvest Festival may attract over 6,000 visitors

KUCHING: The 10th World Harvest Festival to be held at Sarawak Cultural Village from May 2 to 4 is expected to attract over 6,000 visitors from all over the world.

Previously known as Gawai Tourism Night, the colourful and exciting festival with the theme ‘Sibauk and The Magic Golden Seeds’, is expected to contribute at least RM3 million to the state tourism coffer.

Tourism Minister Datuk Amar Abang Johari Tun Openg said the estimate was based on an average spending of RM200 per day per visitor during the three-day festival.

He said the festival attracted about 5,800 visitors last year and would expect about the same number this year.

“The money will go to all those people participating in the festival. Locals will gain from the money spent by tourists on hotels, taxis, flights and food,” Abang Johari told a press conference to promote the festival at his office here yesterday.

Abang Johari said the festival was an important venue for the state to showcase its ethnic and cultural diversity, especially the cultures of the Dayak people in conjunction with Visit Sarawak Year and Visit Malaysia Year 2014.

He also urged SCV to come up with a Gawai package at this time to enable the visitors to experience the Gawai atmosphere.

“WHF 2014 is a good avenue to promote tourism products in areas that are populated by the Bidayuh people,” he added.

For that, he said he would like to work together with Padawan Municipal Council and other agencies including Sarawak Economic Development Corporation (SEDC) to aggressively promote Borneo Highlands Resort in the heart of the Bidayuh country.

“There are many Bidayuh homestays and other attractions there and these we will link up to what we are going to do during the World Harvest Festival 2014.”

SCV general manager Jane Lian Labang said the theme of the festival based on a Bidayuh legend ‘Sibuak and The Magic Golden Seeds’ was written by Jonas Noeb about the livelihood of the Bidayuh people who are related very much to the earth and stars.