Sep 28, 2012

Vietnam to start drive to attract GCC tourists

Vietnam to start drive to attract GCC tourists
From Threeland Travel's Blog - September 2012
Vietnam plans to launch a tourism promotion campaign in the Arab countries, particularly in the GCC states, and ease visa procedures to attract more visitors, a top Vietnamese official has said.

“We are willing to promote tourism and investment in the Gulf region in particular and the whole Arab world in general, “Vietnam minister of Culture, Sports and Tourism Hoang Tuan Anh told Gulf Times on the sidelines of a press conference in Ho Chi Minh City recently.

“The number of GCC visitors to this region is still very limited and intensive promotion efforts have to be exerted to increase their numbers,” he said.

Anh said the Vietnamese government was working to attract more visitors from the Arab world, considering the region as an important area of interest. However, he said that a careful plan has to be implemented to consolidate the Vietnamese tourist market in the Arab world. He also said that there was a genuine interest to target this market.

A Vietnamese folk group performs as part of the ITE festivities “Ministers from Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar and Vietnam (CLMV) have endorsed a plan to work jointly to attract international visitors to the region. They would also consider issuing a single entry visa for the five countries in the Mekong sub-region including Thailand as their plan of promoting CLMV as one destination.” Anh said that in spite of the global economic crisis, regional conflicts and natural disasters, tourism has shown impressive growth in CLMV.

“Last year, CLMV welcomed over 12.3mn international visitors, with a growth of 14.2% compared to 2010,” said Anh.

He also promised to work jointly with the other partner countries to ease visa requirements and procedures such as granting visitors visa on arrival and business visa. He further, explained that the tourist infrastructure and facilities in Vietnam have been considerably upgraded and more investment is scheduled for this important and fast growing sector.

“Many Qatari investors have already expressed their strong interest in investment in the tourism sector in Vietnam. The local government here has reiterated its readiness for such joint investment and there are already some projects underway in our country. Vietnam has also great potential for construction projects. In fact, construction never stops in Vietnam as the demand is ever increasing.”

According to Anh, the CLMV agreement focused on information and experience exchange among themselves and from third party countries and organizations as well as placing particular emphasis on developing human resources and equipping them with the best skills possible. CLMV further agreed to hold an annual ministerial conference in this regard, which would be held in each country in turn.

The International Travel Expo (ITE) HMC 2012 was officially inaugurated by Anh and other top officials of the four countries on Thursday with elaborate festivities showcasing the culture and heritage of each country. A large number of regional tourist companies took part in the ITE-HMC 2012 besides companies from Egypt and Emirates airlines. It offered an excellent platform to introduce them for potential co-operation. It also received a great number of visitors and business seekers in the field.

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