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Singapore has a plan on wooing Malaysians to the island but here is why it may not work

(33 Views) August 17, 2016 3:32 am | Published by | No comment

singapore_flckr_17082016

David Russo/Flickr

Singapore has a total land area of 719.1 square kilometers. The mainland measures 50 kilometers from east to west and 27 kilometers from north to south with 193 kilometers of coastline.

It is a small island, if you want to know what these digits mean.

Add that to cultural similarities with its northern neighbor Malaysia and what you have here is very limited options for tourism. After all, how much chili crab can you eat in a day and Marina Bay Sands is not the most affordable choice of stay either.

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Singaporeans love their chili crab.
Chris Chen/Flickr

It is an economic powerhouse and its currency, the Singaporean dollar, is a top performer. Touristy trips to Singapore, depending on where you come from, requires deep pockets.

According to the Singapore Tourism Board, overall tourist receipts declined for the first time since 2009 last year, falling by 6.8 per cent to $ 22 billion.

Malaysian spending in the Republic dived by a quarter to just $ 637 million. And this, for Singapore, is worrisome.

So, here is what it plans to do: offer financial support for business travel and promote the island’s child-friendliness to Malaysia.

But there is a problem

The Malaysian ringgit is currently Asia’s worst performing currency.

It has depreciated by 20 per cent against the Singapore dollar in the past two years, and it could slip behind fourth-placed India.

So even with some cash aid, which is not a bad plan by the Singaporeans, it is just highly unlikely that Malaysians would throng the city state as it is just too expensive for many.

Also these incentives come with their own criteria which may not always meet the needs of Malaysian tourists.

The post Singapore has a plan on wooing Malaysians to the island but here is why it may not work appeared first on Business Insider.

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