Malaysian Association of Tour and Travel Agents (MATTA) proposed that Penang to be turned into homeport for cruise ships to cater to the region's growing cruise market.
According to its President, Datuk Tan Kok Liang, this would not only benefit tour and travel industry, but would create economic spillovers for port-related services like handling, docking, refuelling, engineering.
Tan said he had submitted a proposal to Finance Minister Lim Guan Eng seeking tax incentives for tour vehicles and double deduction for cruise vessel chartered courses to encourage Penang's adoption as a home port.
On September 6, Penang Port signed joint-venture agreement with Royal Caribbean to redevelop SPCT to accommodate larger cruise ships. The project is due to be completed by the end of 2019.