KUALA LUMPUR: Protest rallies and street marches are counter productive to the tourism industry.
Tourism Minister Datuk Seri Tengku Adnan Tengku Mansor said fresh from restoring Sipadan into the "good books" of Australian travel advisers after the Abu Sayaff kidnappings seven years ago, illegal gatherings were a setback to bringing more tourists.
After launching the Malaysia International Space Adventure exhibition, he said: "It took us seven years to convince Australia that Sipadan is safe and terrorist free. We had similar battles with other countries but the rallies are a set back,"
"Think before you demonstrate, as there are many side effects. Rallies only upset businesses," he said.
"I worry that the winter-fleeing crowd this season may decrease after this furore. The ministry's task force has to work doubly hard to assure travel agents and tourists worldwide that we are safe to visit," he said.
The three-month Malaysia International Space Adventure exhibition begins in Precinct 5, Putrajaya on Dec 15.
The exhibition will feature 87 exhibits from the National Aeronautics and Space Administration and the German Space Museum.
Entrance fee is RM32 for adults and RM28 for children.
For further information on the exhibition, call 03-40247009 or email MISA@adsuria.com.