NILAI - Although Tourism Malaysia has no role in promoting Oktoberfest, its chairman Tan Sri Dr Ng Yen Yen said it was unfair to ban the event in view of the large expatriate community in Malaysia, which included many Germans.
"We also have people coming from all over who wish to take part in the festival," she said, adding that there had never been any issue about it before.
Dr Ng said Tourism Malaysia would not support calls for a ban on the event.
Held since 1810, the Oktoberfest takes place annually in Munich, Germany. It is also celebrated in many other countries.
"If Oktoberfest is banned, then we can never have any such programme (where beer is served) at all.
"As far as I am concerned, it is up to the individual concerned whether he or she wishes to attend such a festival. No one can be compelled to do so," she said after launching the Jom Singgah guidebook at the Seremban R&R on the North South Expressway here yesterday.
The guidebook, among others, provides information on tourism destinations, facilities at 16 upgraded R&R along the NSE, and signature dishes served at selected stops.
PLUS managing director Datuk Noorizah Abd Hamid said the highway concessionaire had printed 80,000 copies of the guidebook in Bahasa Malaysia.
"We will print in English in the next phase," she said, adding that the digital version of the guidebook was also available online at www.plusmiles.com.my
The guidebook is available free at tourist information centres, Tourism Malaysia offices and PLUS offices.