VMY 2014 or Visit Malaysia Year 2014 official launching was held at the Bukit Jalil Stadium in Kuala Lumpur on the 19th January, 2013. This much anticipated grand event was officially launched by the Malaysian Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib at the National Stadium at about 8.30pm the same evening.
The Prime Minister in his speech mentioned that Malaysians have a huge role to play in ensuring foreign tourists get the full Malaysian experience. He also mentioned that the government targeted to receive 28 million tourists next year under Visit Malaysia 2014 or VMY2014 which is an additional three million to the 25 million foreign tourists received last year (2012). In his speech this evening, he said “Every Malaysian needs to make the success of this campaign a national project and mission, and everyone should show a tourist-friendly attitude to let tourists feel that when they visit Malaysia, they are accepted with polite and friendly treatment from locals throughout the country.
One of the five main stages where ethnic drums were used for the launching
Daruk Seri Najib also stressed that Malaysia has its own unique features which are not found elsewhere, among them its fauna and flora, one of the best ecosystem in the world, modern cosmopolitan cities and amazing shopping where the country was recently ranked fourth best location in the world for shopping. "Malay, Chinese, Indian, Iban, Kadazan, Orang Asli and other cultures can all be experienced here. These are Malaysia's selling-points, which other countries cannot compete with. "Furthermore, the peace and stability here makes our country very attractive as a travel destination," he said.
VIP's at the official launching of Visit Malaysia Year 2014
At the Visit Malaysia Year 2014 carnival, present were the Prime Minister's wife Datin Seri Rosmah Mansor, Tourism Minister Datuk Seri Dr Ng Yen Yen, Information, Home Minister Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Tun Hussein and his wife, Communications and Culture Minister Datuk Seri Dr Rais Yatim and deputy Tourism Minister Datuk Dr James Dawos Mamit.
The launch gambit was three strikes on to a traditional drum by all four ministers which led into the VMY 2014 campaign's theme song, Celebrating 1Malaysia, Truly Asia which was sung by Malaysia's rock queen, Ella. The VMY2014 song will be used worldwide to promote the campaign.
Dr Ng in her speech had stressed that social media was going to be one of the platforms used throughout the Visit Malaysia Year 2014 with assistance from Social Media Chambers where there will be additional coverage in the social world. She also said the VMY2014 campaign was already garnering attention as there were 56.3 million online searches on Visit Malaysia 2014.
View of the VMY 2014 Carnival from the media tent
Media from around the world was also invited to witness the colorful and unique launch of the campaign under the MegaFam where about a total of 100 media were present. Visitors were treated to a full carnival atmosphere as there were many tents and exhibitions on display. Among them, there was a tourism consumer exhibition, which has over 200 booths set up by hotels, travel agents and tourism product operators. There was also a section where those interested to join the tourism sector could get more information from the Tourism Career tent while a Theme Park tent was also available for those planning trips to the many theme parks around Malaysia.
Creative lighted structures on display
Photographers were seen having a great time as there was an area where lit human, animal and building structures were places along the walk way into the carnival. These satin fabric structures were colorful and eye catching. Many visitors were seen taking pictures of the various structures and the best time to do this is when the sun sets.
1Malaysia Food Court at the carnival
For the food lovers, a massive 1Malaysia Food Court with almost 100 hawker stalls serving local and ethnic dishes from all over the country was set up in an open tent area. This was a huge hit with the locals and foreigners. Personally, I had an amazing time going to each of the stalls seeing what was served where I ended up with a plate of 'Nasi Keduli' from Raub, Pahang. Choices from almost every state in Malaysia was available here.
Malaysian artist showcasing their skills in the 1Malaysia Art Tent
Art lovers would find the 1Malaysia Contemporary Art Tourism tent interesting as there was displays of various Malaysian art. Local well known artist were also seen demonstrating their painting skills live to the guests. Even Henna was done by a Malaysian Indian family where visitors were treated to a quick RM10 henna experience on their hands.
Crowd at the Visit Malaysia 2014 Carnival
And finally for the music fans, visitors will be treated to performances by well known local artistes such as Ella, Khatijah Ibrahim, and Azlan and the Typewriter at the main stage area. The VMY2014 Carnival will end on Sunday 20th January 2013. Admission is Free. Those driving there, parking charges are only RM2 while those taking the LRT train, make you stop at the Bukit Jalil Station.
Visit Malaysia Year 2014 Campaign
For travelers who are planning to visit Malaysia this year, don't forget to plan your trip and check out the Events in Malaysia for 2013 as there are many unique events to experience throughout the country. There are even multiple events in one month so you can choose the events you want to attend to get a full Malaysian experience on your holiday or travels here.
This massive Visit Malaysia 2014 campaign is also supported by other ministries and agencies, including the Youth and Sports Ministry, Domestic Trade, Co-operatives and Consumerism Ministry, Higher Education Ministry, and the Information, Communications and Culture Ministry to make a successful VMY 2014.