Despite impacts from the disappearance of flight MH370 and the MH17 tragedy of Malaysia Airlines (MAS), the Malaysian Ministry of Tourism and Culture is still optimistic about its goal of welcoming 28 million tourists this year.

Minister of Tourism and Culture Nazri Abdul Aziz said Malaysia recorded an annual increase of 11 percent in tourist arrivals in the January-March quarter, with April alone seeing a tourist arrival record high of 10.9 percent.

At his meeting with reporters in Penang on August 3, the minister, however, admitted that the incidents over the abduction of foreign nationals in Sabah have impacted the Malaysian tourism as the number of Chinese tourists to the country dropped by 30 percent in April and May.

Efforts to attract Chinese tourists back have started and hopefully bring about a positive effect later this year, he added.-VNA