Senior tourism officials from the five nations in the Greater Mekong Sub-Region said there was a possibility for Cambodia, Lao PDR., Myanmar, Vietnam and Thailand – or CLMVT – to be packaged and promoted as a single destination given that the five countries share similarities as well as have their own distinctions on cultural and natural heritages.
Addressing the firstly-held joint press conference “CLMVT Link: Prosper Together”, which took place during the Thailand Travel Mart Plus Amazing Gateway to the Greater Mekong Sub-Region 2016 (TTM+ 2016), senior tourism officials from the CLMVT said that the Sub-Region ‘can’ prosper together by collaborating on tourism activities.
Mr. Try Chhiv, Deputy Director General of Cambodia’s Ministry of Tourism called for a sub-regional effort to enhance the branding of CLMVT not just for the similarities that the five countries share, but also the uniqueness of each country.
Ms. Manisakhone Thammavongxay, Director of the Public Relations Division, Ministry of Information, Culture and Tourism, Lao PDR. suggested for all five countries to have a mutual understanding of the benefit of the CLMVT packages under a ‘five-country-one-destination’ ideal. In reaching that, she noted there was a need to increase transport connectivity among the five countries.
Ms. Daw Khin Than Win, Deputy Director General, Ministry of Hotels and Tourism, Myanmar agreed, saying that there is a need to encourage more low-cost carrier connections between countries as well as to open more checkpoints with enhanced flexibility. “A joint road show is also ideal,” she said.
Mr. Vu Nam, Deputy Director General, Tourism Marketing Department, Vietnam National Administration of Tourism said apart from increasing transportation connection between all countries, the region should look at encouraging more cooperation between tour agencies among the five countries to promote joint tourism products.
Mr. Yuthasak Supasorn, Governor of the Tourism Authority of Thailand made three recommendations. He said, “Firstly, we must set a common goal to promote the CLMVT as a single destination. Secondly, we should look at improving connectivity and linkages, and thirdly, we should look at turning our common goal into actions.”
Tourism is among the top revenue generators for Cambodia, Lao PDR., Myanmar, Vietnam and Thailand. Over the years, the five countries have recorded continuous growth in tourist arrivals, tourism receipts as well as tourism investments.