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APEC ministers focus on tourism innovation and sustainability

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APEC’s 12th Tourism Ministers’ Meeting in Peru emphasized innovation, digital tools, and sustainable tourism, with Vietnam showcasing significant contributions.

The 12th Tourism Ministers’ Meeting (TMM12) within the framework of the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) took place in Urubamba city, Cusco (Peru) on 9 June 2024, with the participation of Ministers and senior tourism officials from 21 APEC economies and international tourism organizations.

The Vietnamese delegation was led by Deputy Minister of Culture, Sports and Tourism Mr. Ho An Phong, together with Vice Chairman of Vietnam National Authority of Tourism Mr. Ha Van Sieu.

The meeting took place with the theme “Innovation and Sustainability: Forging the Future of Tourism in the Asia-Pacific Region” and prioritized discussions focusing on (1) Guidance on the way forward for the TWG activities in the near future (2) Use of digital tools in the tourism sector, (3) Optimizing the supply chain to develop sustainable tourism in APEC economies.

On behalf of Minister of Culture, Sports and Tourism of Vietnam, Deputy Minister Ho An Phong highly appreciated the efforts of the APEC Tourism Working Group in implementing the TWG Strategic Plan 2020 – 2024 and discussing building TWG Strategic Plan 2025 – 2029. Deputy Minister believes that the specific activities in the Plan will make an important contribution to achieving the goals of the APEC Putrajaya Vision 2040, the Aotearoa Action Plan and the Sustainable Development Strategy 2030.

Informing the meeting about Vietnam’s contribution to implementing the plan for the 2020-2024 period, Deputy Minister Ho An Phong said that Vietnam has chaired the implementation of the project “Increasing prospects for connecting tourism businesses through the application of information technology to build and promote a network of micro, small and medium-sized enterprises in community tourism in APEC rural areas.”

The project was completed in June 2023 with the publication of websites for tourist villages, small and medium-sized tourism businesses in remote areas and the development of documents guiding businesses to post information on the website.

APEC 2

On this occasion, the Deputy Minister updated Vietnam’s new policies to create more favorable conditions for international tourists to Vietnam. Accordingly, Vietnam National Assembly has promulgated the Law amending and supplementing a number of articles of the Law on Entry and Exit of Vietnamese Citizens and the Law on Entry, Exit, Transit and Residence of Foreigners in Vietnam, effective from 15 August 2023. In which, increasing the duration of e-visas to 90 days, valid for single entry or multiple entries; Increasing the duration of stay from 15 days to 45 days for citizens of countries that are unilaterally exempted from visas by Vietnam.

In order to accelerate the rapid recovery of international tourism in the region, the Deputy Minister proposed that APEC economies continue to strengthen cooperation in areas such as: enhancing communication on new entry requirements; Supporting each other to restart direct tourism promotion and build tourists’ confidence in safe tourism; building common awareness in APEC about the need to digitize the passenger information; Strengthening cooperation between businesses and government on digitalization; Removing barriers and restrictions on passenger travel.

Within the framework of the program, the conference discussed the topic of Innovation and the use of digital tools to facilitate the transition of tourism stakeholders to the formal economy, strengthen SMEs, and enhance the travel experience in the APEC region; Building resilient tourism: optimizing sustainable tourism supply chains across APEC economies.

Ministers and heads of APEC tourism delegations listened to reports from the APEC Business Advisory Council (ABAC), the World Travel and Tourism Council (WTTC), the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD), UN Tourism.

The meeting ended with the approval of APEC 12th Tourism Ministers Meeting Statement.

On the sidelines of the meeting, Deputy Minister Ho An Phong received Ms. Gabriela Gamez, Government Affairs Manager at WTTC. Ms. Gabriela Gamez invited Vietnam to attend 24th WTTC Global Summit. Mr. Ho An Phong called WTTC to support Vietnam tourism especially in areas of sustainable tourism, applying digital technology to develop safe and seamless tourism.

George Diamantopoulos
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George, in his capacity as an intern, diligently oversees the flow of news, assists in the publication of content, and delves into the strategies of social media distribution. He is currently pursuing his studies in Business Administration at the Athens University of Economics and Business.

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