Viet Nam News
BÌNH DƯƠNG – Vietnamese and Malaysian scholars have predicted an increase in tourism between Bình Dương Province and Penang, a UNESCO World Heritage Site in Malaysia, following a conference held in the province on Saturday.
The conference was organised by the province’s Thủ Dầu Một University and the University of Science in Malaysia.
Professor Badaruddin Mohamed, who manages the Tourism Research Circle unit at the School of Housing, Building and Planning at the University of Science, said that city tourism would be promoted through bilateral understanding of culture and communities.
Malaysian participants at the event described the special traits of Penang, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, including traditional craft villages, entertainment zones, and Muslim architecture and community.
They also provided information to local tourism authorities and agencies on how to welcome Muslim tourists, mostly from Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore and the Middle East.
In 2017, Việt Nam welcomed more than 400,000 visitors from Malaysia, Indonesia, Singapore and the United Arab Emirates (UAE).
The tourists prefer to visit the Mekong Delta and HCM City.
However, Bình Dương, despite being only 30 kilometres from HCM City, has attracted a small number of Muslim tourists.
Professor Nguyễn Văn Hiệp, council chairman of Thủ Dầu Một University, said: “Bình Dương is part of the Southern Focal Economic Zone and is becoming a rapidly growing city in the southeast region of Việt Nam. In 2018, the province ranked No 2 in foreign direct investment.”
Although the province’s economy is strong, its culture, education, health, and tourism sectors have not developed as quickly, he said, adding that in 2017, only 200,000 foreign tourists visited Bình Dương.
At the conference, Vietnamese participants presented information about Bình Dương to Malaysian delegates, including its Buddhism architecture, craft villages and fruit gardens.
The event also included a signing ceremony between the Tourism Research Circle unit and Thủ Dầu Một’s Strategic Development Institute on cooperation in scientific research, event organising, and scientific book publishing. VNS