Malaysian Campsite Operators In The Dark Over Licensing

Pic credit: CNA

In the aftermath of the deadly Batang Kali landslide that has claimed at least 26 lives, questions are being raised about licensing approvals that are needed to run campsites in Malaysia.

After the landslide in the early hours of Dec 16, Local Government Development Minister Nga Kor Ming had said that the operators of the Father’s Organic Farm in Batang Kali were permitted to open organic farms but had not put in an application to set up campsites.

Nga said the campsite was operating without a licence from the Hulu Selangor district council, where the farm was located.

However, most campsite operators that CNA reached out to seem to be in the dark about licensing requirements to operate their businesses.

Some are also worried that the incident would affect their business in the long run but welcomed any guidelines or requirements that could ensure safety of campers. 

Farizal Shaari, who is the owner of Greenstone camp in Padang Rengas, Perak said that while he has a business licence from the Companies Commission of Malaysia, he did not have any specific licence to operate the campsite.

He told CNA that the Ministry of Tourism and Culture had in the past directed him to the local council who then told him that his site was not in their jurisdiction. 

“Now, we are left hanging (after the incident). What licence are you talking about?,” he said, adding that they were operating as usual for now as they did not get any instructions to close.  

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