Tourism Businesses Push for More Consulates

Tourism industry players have demanded that there should be more Myanmar consulates in foreign countries as the tourism sector develops.

“Many countries open consulates for the development of their country’s tourism industry. Thailand is well known for tourism but people hardly know about next-door Myanmar. Establishing consulates in foreign countries will definitely help Myanmar’s tourism sector develop,” Daw Sabei Aung, managing director of Nature Dream Travel and Tours Co Ltd, told Myanmar Business Today.

Representatives should be well qualified and conversant with Myanmar’s tourism sector, she added.

“We have not been able to appoint economic ambassadors for every country yet. To appoint tourism representatives in foreign countries will take some time, and cannot be done that quickly. We are cooperating with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs to work on this issue,” U Tint Thwin, director general of the Ministry of Hotels and Tourism, told Myanmar Business Today.

“If Myanmar can promote its array of attractions, there will be many more tourists coming to Myanmar. Myanmar has the ability compete with Thailand. Consulates in foreign countries to help tourists are needed for the Myanmar tourism industry,” said U Tin Tun Aung, managing director of Thingazar Travels and Tours Company.

Thailand boasts a more robust tourism infrastructure than Myanmar. In 2013 arrivals in Thailand jumped to 26.55 million, while 2014 saw a decrease in visitors to 24.78 million. Tourism receipts directly contributes to 16 percent of Thailand’s GDP.

The Ministry of Hotels and Tourism estimates that 4.5 million foreign visitors would arrive in Myanmar this year, but experts dismiss the inflated figures saying this include day-trippers and traders coming across the border gates who can’t be regarded as tourists.

Source: Myanmar Business Today

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