Promote Brunei culture in tour packages: Minister

National 2 minutes, 2 seconds

BANDAR SERI BEGAWAN

THE minister of primary resources and tourism is calling on travel agents to include the sultanate’s traditional sports events into their tour packages to further promote Brunei Darussalam’s traditions as cultural tourism products.

In an interview with _The Brunei Times _on the sidelines of a kite festival held at the Dermaga Diraja Bandar Seri Begawan yesterday, Yang Berhormat Dato Seri Setia Hj Ali Hj Apong said that it has always been part of the ministry’s initiative to promote Bruneian culture as a tourism product.

He said that travel agents should create a dialogue with the relevant agencies to ensure that these traditional sport events such as the Royal Regatta are on fixed schedules adding that: “once they (the travel agents) are sure of an event’s schedule, they can include them in one of their tour packages.”

“Strengthening the country’s traditional sports like kite flying and gasing (spinning top) by promoting them as cultural tourism products is important because it is one of the ways to ensure that these traditions are not swept away by the tides of time,” said the minister.

YB Dato Hj Ali went on to say that promoting the nation’s traditional sports will act as a platform to appreciate and provide entrepreneurship  opportunities to  those of the older generation that have committed their time to keep the traditions alive.

These individuals, he said, does not only include enthusiasts but also individuals who earn a living by crafting the traditional sports’ tools such as kite makers and gasing makers.

“The most important thing about promoting this (the country’s traditional sports) is its potential to spark the interest of youths (therefore) creating a new generation of Bruneians that will hopefully continue to preserve them,” said Dato Hj Ali.

The primary resources and tourism minister went on to say that he hoped in the near future, workshops could be made to schools around the sultanate to introduce adolescents of the history and importance of the sultanate’s traditional sports.

“Furthermore, in today’s age, a lot of modern innovations can be integrated into our traditional sports such as the materials used and its designs.

Of course we have to make sure that some of the traditional aspects are maintained but at the same time, our traditional sports should also be open to creativity in order to successfully revive them,” added YB Dato Hj Ali.

The Brunei Times