BANGKOK, 23 February 2017: Ministry of Tourism and Sports calls on tourism operators and related sectors to end the sale of pirated goods to travellers to build a positive image for the country’s tourism industry.
The ministry’s permanent secretary, Pongpanu Svetarundra, said the ministry supports Prime Minister Prayut Chan-ocha policy to accelerate suppression of the sale of pirated property.
He said: “Pirated products are mostly sold in tourist districts…the ministry then urges tour operators and importers to support the campaign.” Read more
PARIS, 23 February 2017: Paris saw a drop of 1.5 million tourists in 2016 as fears linked to terror attacks scared off visitors, especially from China and Japan, figures showed Tuesday.
However, tourist numbers picked up towards the end of the year, suggesting the slump could be easing, regional tourism authority CRT said.
The number of international visitors to the French capital fell almost 9% in 2016, with numbers from Japan plummeting more than 40% and Chinese visitors down by more than 20%. Read more
SINGAPORE, 22 February 2017: Japanese tour giant, JTB Corporation and the Singapore Tourism Board, have signed a Memorandum of Understanding to promote Singapore as a key destination during 2017.
This is the first MOU between STB and a commercial travel organisation in Japan.
It will focus specifically on the objective of attracting 90,000 Japanese tourists through joint campaigns. Read more
YANGON, 22 February 2017: Myanmar’s Ministry of Hotels and Tourism reports there are now 400 registered outbound tour operators in the country.
Global New Light of Myanmar reported the ministry has been approving outbound tour licenses to operators since its initiation in late 2015.
Travel agents are still a popular booking channel for Myanmar residents, although direct bookings through the internet are steadily increasing. Read more
VIENTIANE, 21 February 2017: Lao PDR’s Ministry of Information, Culture and Tourism says the country should develop tourism products and improve safety measures to attract more visitors and build tourist confidence.
Lao New Agency quoted the ministry’s deputy minister, Bouangeun Saphouvong, saying the tourism sector in Laos should develop integrated tourism products to attract more visitors to the country.
“We also have to ensure visitors that they can enjoy themselves, get a broad knowledge of Laos and its culture, see beautiful places, taste delicious food, as well travel safely on good transport.” Read more
BANGKOK, 21 February 2017: Thailand’s economy grew 3.2% in 2016, a slight increase on the previous year mainly driven by a buoyant tourism industry and government infrastructure projects.
But the performance is still below the junta’s target as the generals struggle to revive what was once one of the region’s strongest economies.
After two decades of roaring growth that saw the middle class boom, the nation has seen its financial fortunes stutter in recent years. Read more
BANGKOK, 20 February 2017: UNWTO should be applauded for its efforts to introduce a charter on tourist protection. It’s a subject that rarely raises glasses in a toast of support at travel trade cocktail parties.
The trade is usually preoccupied with protecting its own interests in the time of crisis. That could extend to outdoing competitors with a not-to-be missed discount loaded with small print to trap consumers during a tour operator’s hour of need.
UNWTO has put the shoe on the other foot this time looking at how we should care for consumers in their hour of need. Read more
YANGON, 20 February 2017: Myanmar Tourism Federation and the Tourism Authority of Thailand recently signed a MoU to promote tourism between the two countries under the tagline Two countries – One Destination, but will it resolve major pain points?
They claim it will have positive impact on the tourism industries in both Thailand and Myanmar, but neither organisation is in a position to introduce measures to streamline travel and remove the pain points plaguing overland travel. That is in the hands of ministries and they are ignoring even the most obvious obstacles that hinder tourism growth.
Thailand and Myanmar share a 1,800 km border, but there are only three official overland border posts (Tachileik, Myawaddy and Kaw Thaung) where tourists can enter and exit Myanmar if they are using the popular e-visa. Read more
BANGKOK, 20 February 2017: Thailand’s Ministry of Tourism and Sports claims tourism revenue contributed a 17.7% slice of the country’s gross domestic product last year.
The ministry’s permanent secretary, Pongpanu Svetarundra, said overall tourism circulated THB2,510,779 million in revenue last year increasing 11.09% from 2015.
Of that, THB1,641,268 million came from international markets (+12.64%) and THB869,510 million from domestic markets (+8.27%). Read more
KOTA KINABALU, 20 February 2017: Sabah’s report card for tourist arrivals in 2016 showed an overall 7.9% increase compared to 2015.
The East Malaysia state attracted 3.427 million visitors, surpassing the ‘best year in tourism’ achieved in 2013 (3.383 million).
This is an estimated RM7.25 billion generated in tourism receipts, or an extra 10% contribution to the state economy, according to Sabah Tourism. Read more