MTCO boss stays until 2020

NAKHON PHANOM, 27 June 2018: The Mekong Tourism Coordinating Office’s executive director, Jens Thraenhart, has been given a new two-year contract that will see him head the region’s tourism through to July 2020.

Tourism officials attending Monday’s Mekong Tourism Working Group meeting confirmed Thraenhart gained unanimous support for another two years.

He started his term at the MTCO in 2014 and has completed two terms of two years each.

The Tourism Working Group represents the tourism interests of Cambodia, China, Laos, Myanmar, Thailand and Vietnam.

Commenting on his extension, tourism officials from Laos said Thraenhart has “achieved considerable success, while heading the MTCO and has met the goals and objectives of the working group”.

MTCO will continue to operate out of a head office in Bangkok, housed in premises at Thailand’s Ministry of Tourism and Sports.

The official announcement on the extension of Thraenhart’s contract with MTCO breaks with the precedent of limiting the director’s   tenure to a maximum of four years.

But the group is looking for continuity and backed Thraenhart for his leadership in adopting technology, creating innovative social media programmes and engaging with the private sector to introduce private-public projects and enterprises.

At the close of the Mekong countries’ board meeting, Tuesday, China’s delegation officially confirmed that Yunnan province would host the 2019 Mekong Tourism Forum in Dali.

Dates have still be finalised, but a member of the delegation confirmed the event would be hosted in May.

Dali stands on the shores of Erhai Lake in China’s southwest Yunnan province. Standing at an elevation of almost 2,000 metres it has a population of 652,045.

A highlight of the stay in a Dali is the side-trip to the city’s ancient town, probably one of the most famous ancient towns in China. As a major stop on the Ancient Tea Horse Road, or Southwest Silk Road, it is steeped in history and traditional culture.

Compared to the Old Town of Lijiang, Dali Ancient Town is smaller, but less crowded. Xiaguan the modern district of Dali City is about 10 km from the ancient district.

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