Government says poor infrastructure, products hinder tourism growth

By Phuong Anh   May 18, 2023 | 10:16 pm PT
Government says poor infrastructure, products hinder tourism growth
Foreign tourists sunbathe on My Khe beach in Da Nang, May 2023. Photo by VnExpress/Nguyen Dong
Modest infrastructure, tough visa conditions and lack of attractive products have stymied the tourism industry's recovery in the year since borders were reopened after Covid, the government said.

Not promoting tourism adequately, environmental issues and shortage of skilled tourism workers are also major challenges, while digital transformation in tourism "has not kept pace with developments," making it difficult for foreigners to get e-visas, it added.

A resolution it issued on Thursday on tourism recovery calls for improving entry and exit procedures for foreigners at borders and expanding the list of countries whose nationals are eligible for e-visas.

Vietnam currently offers 30-day single-entry e-visas for citizens of 80 countries and territories.

But legislators recently backed a government proposal to triple the validity period and allow multiple entry.

The changes are set to be approved by the National Assembly this month.

The government has exhorted the tourism industry to develop new tourism products and strengthen promotion through diplomatic activities and international events.

From now through October the Vietnam National Administration of Tourism will appraise the quality of tourist accommodations in 11 key destinations including Hanoi, HCMC, Da Nang, Khanh Hoa, and Quang Nam.

Despite being one of the first Southeast Asian countries to fully reopen to international tourism post Covid, Vietnam received only 3.6 million foreign tourists last year, far fewer than neighbors like Thailand, Indonesia and Malaysia.

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