ATF: Drive for quality tourism

HALONG BAY, 16 January 2019: ASEAN tourism leaders are meeting here in Halong Bay, this week, to advance the cause of quality tourism in the 10-member countries

Based on the ASEAN tourism development strategy for 2016 to 2025 the countries have set a target to achieve quality tourism objectives by 2025.

Commenting on the quality tourism target Vietnam’s Minister of Culture, Sports and Tourism Nguyen Ngoc Thien said on Tuesday that ASEAN’s tourism ministers would sign off on a policy to establish quality tourism through specific and practical measures.

The priorities to create a quality tourism experience in ASEAN, he said started with ensuring safety and security for all tourists.

Other priorities focus on reforming border procedures by making the transfer from one country to another more convenient and less costly.

Reducing the overload on traffic and infrastructure in tourist destinations across ASEAN was described as essential, while quality would be achieved by achieving fair value-for-money prices for regional tourism services, the minister noted.

ASEAN ministers have also identified other essential items to achieve quality tour.

“We need to enlist the participation of local communities; minimise the impact on climate change on heritage, cultural and historical relics; while developing green and knowledge-based tourism,” Vietnam’s tourism minister explained.

Vietnam is hosting the ASEAN Tourism Forum at Vietnam’s popular UNESCO World Heritage Site of Halong in the northeast coastal province of Quang Ninh during this week, attracting a turnout of around 1,500 delegates including tourism officials representing the 10 ASEAN countries

Their closed-door government level meetings are already underway and continue through to Friday alongside the ATF’s TRAVEX trade show that musters an estimated 394 booths and 390 international travel buyers (provisional estimates).

ASEAN Statistics show that in 2018, international visits to Southeast Asia reached around 130 million. Travel from within the region contributes a market share of around 40%, while visits from Northeast Asia source markets represents another 37% with the balance drawn from Oceania, Europe and the Americas.