18th ASEAN+ 3 Tourism Ministerial Meeting opens in Quang Ninh

Friday, 2019-01-18 16:55:48
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The ASEAN+ 3 Tourism Ministerial Meeting opens in Quang Ninh on January 18. (Photo: baovanhoa.vn)
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NDO – The 18th ASEAN+ 3 Tourism Ministerial Meeting opened in Ha Long city, Quang Ninh province, on January 18, as part of a series of events under the framework of the ongoing ASEAN Tourism Forum (ATF) 2019.

The meeting was chaired by Vietnamese Minister of Culture, Sports and Tourism, Nguyen Ngoc Thien.

Speaking at the opening, Minister Thien emphasised the significance and importance of ASEAN tourism cooperation with the bloc’s three partner countries, including China, Japan and the Republic of Korea (ROK).

He quoted the statistics that two-way tourist exchanges between ASEAN and China reached more than 50 million visitors in 2018. Of which, approximately 30 million Chinese tourists travelled to ASEAN (up 30% compared to 2017) and roughly 22 million ASEAN travellers toured China (up 105% compared to 2017).

Japan and the ROK are also two important markets for ASEAN tourism. Last year, around three million ASEAN tourists travelled to Japan, up 16% compared to 2017, and more than five million Japanese visitors went to ASEAN countries, up 5%. In the same year, there were 2.5 million ASEAN tourists traveling to the ROK and eight million Korean visitors to ASEAN, up 25% compared to 2017.

However, the attraction of tourists from the three partner countries to ASEAN is still modest compared to the economic size and the number of tourists travelling to foreign countries from these three nations.

Minister Thien urged the delegates at the 18th ASEAN+3 Tourism Ministerial Meeting to discuss measures to promote tourism between the sides, as well as enhancing cooperation in areas of mutual interest, thereby bringing the tourism cooperation relations between ASEAN and China, Japan and the ROK to a new height, and contributing to promoting cultural exchanges and strengthening the friendship, cooperation and prosperity of ASEAN as well as three countries of Northeast Asia.

At the meeting, the ASEAN Deputy Secretary-General announced the results related to tourism at the 21st ASEAN+ 3 Summit held on November 15, 2018, in Singapore and ASEAN+ 1 Summits.

A representative from host Vietnam also informed those present on the implementation of ASEAN+ 3 tourism cooperation mechanism since the 17th ASEAN+ 3 Tourism Ministerial Meeting.