(File pix) According to the WEF report, Malaysia is also a prime destination for nature and eco-tourism buffs, with Borneo’s famous orangutan being among the star attractions. Pix by Muhammad Zuhairi Zuber

KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysia is listed as one of the world’s top 20 cheapest countries to visit in the World Economic Forum (WEF)’s Travel and Tourism Competitiveness Report, which was released recently.

Based on price competitiveness, Malaysia is third in the world, with a rating of 6.06.

According to the WEF report, Malaysia is also a prime destination for nature and eco-tourism buffs, with Borneo’s famous orangutan being among the star attractions.

“East Malaysia is famously home to the Borneo orangutan, which is critically-endangered, due to habitat loss.

“Mercifully, there are still pockets of rainforest where these great apes can be spotted, along with Borneo pygmy elephants.

“There are also several orangutan rehabilitation centres in the area, where visitors can learn about the uphill battle that these creatures – and those who strive to protect them - are facing,” the report said.

Other countries listed in the report are Iran, Egypt, Algeria, Indonesia, Butan, Yemen, Kazakhstan, Tunisia, India, Russia, Qatar, Botswana, Laos, Mongolia, Guatemala, Saudi Arabia, Thailand, Nepal and Sri Lanka.

Based on top factors such as safety, infrastructure, health and cultural resources, however, Spain tops the list of competitive tourist destinations, followed by France and Germany.

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