HCM CITY — HCM City has set a target to welcome nearly 4 million international visitors this year, up from 3.5 million last year, with a year-on-year growth of 8 per cent, according to a plan unveiled recently by the city's Department of Culture, Sports and Tourism.
|Foreign tourists visit the downtown area of HCM City. As many as 4 million foreign tourists are expected to visit the city this year. — VNA/VNS Photo Thanh Phan
Under the plan to develop the city's tourism in the 2011–20 period, the city targets revenue of VND58.8 trillion (US$2.8 billion) from the industry, with a year-on-year growth of 20 per cent.
According to the plan, the city will further enhance the quality of tourism products and services by recognising the best tourism products and services and recommending those to both local and foreign tourists.
In addition to boosting quality of current tourism products, the city will promote new tourism products or programmes that exploit the city's advantages, including shopping tourism, river tourism and cultural and historical tourism.
The tourism industry will also focus on potential markets.
The city will continue to develop tourism promotions, such as "HCM City – 100 interesting things" programme in an effort to build trademarks for the city's tourism industry, as well as other promotions with neighbouring provinces and cities.
In addition, it will also use the local media to publicise information about tourist destinations in the city.
To improve services and attract more tourists, industry officials will participate in tourism activities held by international tourism organisations, especially the Tourism Promotion Organisation for Asia-Pacific Cities.
The focus of this year's tourism industry continues to be river-tourism products, including short routes such as Bach Dang Whalf (District 1) – Artist Villalge (District 2), medium routes such as HCM City – Binh Duong Province – Cu Chi District, HCM City – Dong Nai Province and Bach Dang – Can Gio District; and long routes from HCM City to Cuu Long (Mekong) Delta provinces.
According to the plan, the city will also disseminate information about tourism laws to the departments and people's committees in 24 districts.
It plans to offer training for tourism staff, focusing on professional skills and knowledge.
In 2011, the number of international visitors to the city reached 3,500,000, an increase of 12.9 per cent over 2010.
Total revenue of the city's tourism industry last year reached more than VND49 trillion ($2.3 billion), 19.5 per cent higher than the previous year, meeting the set target. — VNS