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Penang has ample licensed accommodation facilities for visitors, says CM

Publish date: Tue, 30 May 2023, 05:54 PM

GEORGE TOWN: Visitors to the state are encouraged to stay in licensed facilities, Chief Minister Chow Kon Yeow said.

He said Penang already had enough accommodation facilities, such as star-rated hotels, heritage hotels, home stays and service apartments, to offer to tourists.

"The hospitality and accommodation sector too needs business. As such, we encourage tourists and visitors to stay in these licensed facilities," he told newsmen here today.

He was asked if the ban on all forms of short-term rental accommodation (STR) in residential units on the island would affect the state's tourism.

Elaborating, Chow said a residence should be left for the purpose of residence.

"We should leave it at that (residence remains residence). This is so that disturbances to the homes and residents of the unit can be reduced," he added.

The Penang Island City Council (MBPP) had recently established a general guideline to ban all forms of STR in residential units on the island effective immediately.

MBPP mayor Datuk A. Rajendran had said that the ban covered all private residential properties and only commercial high-rises were allowed for STR services, subject to strict regulations.

Landed properties were strictly prohibited from operating STR business. However, those planning to offer the STRs in the commercial categories must obtain the approval of their respective joint management bodies (JMBs) or management corporations (MCs). They need to obtain a 75 per cent "yes" vote from other residents during the annual general meeting.

Asked on some development projects which advertised as STR to entice buyers, Chow said service apartments were allowed.

Chow was met at a press conference to announce the Penang International Food Festival 2023 at The Whiteaways Arcade at Beach Street here this afternoon.

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