Visitors at Tràm Chim National Park in Đồng Tháp Province. VNA/VNS Photo Chương Đài
HCM CITY — HCM City and 13 cities and provinces in the Cửu Long (Mekong) Delta will step up efforts to foster tourism cooperation in the next five years, local authorities have said.
The tourism cooperation programme between HCM City and the Mekong Delta signed last year outlined collaboration in five areas: State management in tourism, development of new products, marketing and promotion activities, training of human resources, and investment in tourism.
The cooperation had resulted in the forming of a regional tourism brand for HCM City and the Mekong Delta, said Phan Thị Thắng, deputy chairwoman of the HCM City People’s Committee.
Marketing and communications activities were needed to promote the regional tourism brand and new inter-regional travel products, Thắng said at a meeting held in Đồng Tháp Province last week.
As international travel had been disrupted due to the pandemic, she said it was vital to boost domestic travel to make up for some of the shortfall in tourism revenue.
Domestic travel, which accounted for nearly 60 per cent of the total number of visitors to HCM City in 2019, remains the main source market of Mekong Delta tourism.
The tourism industry has been hit hard by the pandemic, with a sharp plummet in tourist arrivals and tourism revenue.
The number of tourist arrivals to HCM City dropped by 66.6 per cent to more than 17 million, including 1.3 million international tourists, a year-on-year decline of 84.8 per cent.
Tourism revenue in HCM City was estimated at VNĐ84.5 trillion (US$3.65 billion) last year, a year-on-year decrease of 39.6 per cent.
The Mekong Delta saw a 38 per cent decrease in the number of visitors and a 48 per cent fall in tourism revenue last year.
Small- and medium-sized enterprises, which account for 98 per cent of businesses in the tourism industry, have been dramatically affected by the pandemic, with many of them temporarily shutting down or shifting to other businesses.
Nguyễn Thị Thanh Hương, deputy head of the Việt Nam National Tourism Administration, said the initiative to form tourism cooperation and linkages between HCM City and 13 cities and provinces in the Mekong Delta would create opportunities for enterprises in the tourism industry to develop.
The initiative would also help realise the tourism potential of each locality and boost investment in tourism, she said.
Under the agreement, three new inter-regional travel products and 50 stimulus travel tours with discounted prices have been launched from HCM City to localities in the Mekong Delta. —VNS