VNAT’s Chairman Nguyen Trung Khanh: Accelerating digital technology application and innovation to improve ASEAN’s tourism competitiveness

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– On February 4, authorized by the Vietnamese Minister of Culture, Sports and Tourism, VNAT’s Chairman Nguyen Trung Khanh attended 24th online Meeting of ASEAN Tourism Ministers.

Giving speech at the meeting, Chairman Nguyen Trung Khanh emphasized that, despite the strong growth in recent years, ASEAN tourism industry has faced a great challenge in 2020 due to the severe impacts of Covid-19 pandemic. Viet Nam witnessed a sharp decline in all aspects of tourism performance. However, ASEAN tourism is united more than ever, as Viet Nam fostered effective communication through virtual periodic meetings and even special meetings on Covid-19. Beside some events, which have to be postponed  in 2021, many projects were completed in 2020 with the strong commitment and great effort of all member states.

ASEAN Tourism Strategic Plan 2016-2025 has come halfway, as ASEAN have run through the mid-term review of the Strategic Plan and revise it with a view of current tourism context and outlook for the next five years.

In the context of long-lasting and complicated Covid-19 pandemic, the application of digital technology and innovation in tourism will be emphasised to enhance the competitiveness of destination and promote more contactless tourism.

As the ASEAN Declaration on Digital Tourism was adopted at the 37th Meeting of ASEAN Leaders last November, Viet Nam wishes all member states to join hand in implementing the Declaration for the best of ASEAN tourism, as well as to conduct action plan to develop digital tourism in respective countries.

At the meeting, ASEAN Secretariat informed about outcomes of  37th ASEAN Summit and Related Meetings, held on 12 - 15 November 2020.

The report on progress of ASEAN tourism activities since the 23rd Meeting of ASEAN Tourism Ministers also was presented at the meeting. In 2020, ASEAN has implemented many activities to promote online tourism such as building new promotional clips and upgrading the website to introduce ASEAN tourism; Implementing the ASEAN Tourism Marketing Strategy 2017-2020, focusing on online promotion on social networking such as Facebook, Instagram; Cooperating with UNWTO in promoting and supporting digital and innovation tourism startups; Continuing to work with ASEAN marketing partners such as Air Asia, Mastercard, TTG ...

Promotion campaigns have contributed to maintaining the brand of ASEAN tourism and interacting with tourists while international travel is closed due to Covid-19 pandemic. In terms of ASEAN standards, the ASEAN MICE Venue Standards and the ASEAN Spa Services Standards continue to be developed; In addition, continue to implement Mutual Recognition Agreement on Tourism Professionals (MRA-TP).

In the meeting framework, the delegates reviewed and approved Phnom Penh Declaration on a More Sustainable, Inclusive and Resilent ASEAN Tourism; 2021 plans of partners including ASEAN+3 centers (ACC, AJC and AKC), Asia-Pacific Tourism Association, ASEAN Tourism Association, ASEAN Tourism Research Association ...

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