The Tourism Ministry is expected to spend RM1.7 million for the "official trips" of minister Datuk Seri Dr Ng Yen Yen abroad this year.
In a written reply to MP Tian Chua (DAP-Batu), Dr Ng said the cost of the Tourism Minister's visit was RM1.2 million in 2008 and RM1.6 million last year.
"To ensure the tourism industry continue to grow, the ministry and its agency, Tourism Malaysia, carry out tourism promotions abroad such as through sales missions, road shows, seminars, workshops and working visits.
"These are among strategies to promote tourism apart from taking up media advertisement," she said.speaking for herself.
MP Tian Chua, who distributed the written reply to the media in parliament, told reporters that the amount was "alarming".
It would be good for him to get more detailed account of why most of the trips are to China and why only certain people accompany her besides her henpecked husband and the usual MCA junkets.