Vietnam Tourism sector urged to achieve dual goal amid COVID-19

Minister of Culture, Sports and Tourism Nguyen Ngoc Thien has called on the tourism sector to achieve the dual goal of fighting the COVID-19 pandemic and developing socio-economy in the current context.

During a conference in Hanoi on July 28 reviewing the sport-tourism sector's six-month performance and outlining key tasks for the remaining months of this year, Thien said the sector should uphold the past achievements after the pandemic has been under control, including making the best preparations for the 31st Southeast Asian Games and the 11th ASEAN Para Games.

Between now and the year-end, the sport sector was assigned to continue developing physical exercises and sports nationwide in response to the campaign “All people take exercises following the example of great Uncle Ho”.

It also must prepare for athletes competing in the sixth Asian Beach Games, qualification rounds of Olympic and Paralympic tournaments, as well as regional, continental and world sport championships next year.

The Vietnam National Administration of Tourism (VNAT) was required to prepare necessary conditions to welcome foreigners once COVID-19 is under control while stimulating domestic tourism via the campaign “Vietnamese people travel Vietnam”, the media campaign “Safe Vietnam”, helping to popularise a safe, friendly and attractive country.

According to the VNAT, the number of foreign tourist arrivals in Vietnam surpassed 3.68 million in the first half of this year, down 49.5 percent year-on-year while the number of domestic visitors reached 23 million. The total revenue from tourism reached 176.8 trillion VND (7.68 billion USD), down 47.7 percent annually.

In the first quarter, 95 percent of travel agents suspended operations, occupancy at lodging facilities only reached near 20 percent, and the number of companies applying for new outbound travel licenses slumped by 48 percent. In March – April, hotels and lodging facilities basically shut down operations.

Notably, during the domestic demand stimulation period from June, many localities recorded a 1.5 to three-fold surge in tourist arrivals, including Sa Pa (Lao Cai), Quang Ninh, Sam Son (Thanh Hoa), Quy Nhon (Binh Dinh), Phu Yen, Phu Quoc (Kien Giang).

In the first half of this year, Vietnamese athletes competed in 18 international tournaments, winning 26 golds, 11 silvers and 8 bronzes.

The ministry completed the building of ministry-level e-government architecture, launched V-office system in its units, and sent dossiers to the UNESCO seeking the recognition of Dong Ho folk painting as intangible cultural heritage in need of urgent safeguarding, and Xoe Thai dance as intangible cultural heritage of humanity./.


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