Additionally , provincial authorities should have mechanism to encourage travel agents to launch more unique tours, said HCMC Party Chief Nguyen Thien Nhan.
Chairman of the People’s Committee in Bac Lieu Duong Thanh Trung said the Mekong delta tourism has not developed as expectation as the region falls short of specific destinations, tourist entertainment and strategies as well as mechanism to boost tourism.
Sharing the same opinion, Deputy Chairman of the People’s Committee in Dong Thap Doan Tan Buu said that linkage between Ho Chi Minh City and 13 Mekong delta provinces and city for tourism growth is indispensable; however, the cooperation has not worked effectively for years.
Determination to make breakthrough in tourism cooperation between Ho Chi Minh City and the Mekong delta region was manifested at the seminar organized in Ho Chi Minh before. Dong Thap leader believed the seminar as significant landmark for not only tourism development but also traffic infrastructure, culture and economic development of the region.
Nguyen Quoc Ky, who heads big travel company Vietravel, said the number of visitors to the Mekong delta region in 2018 was 40.7 million including around 3.4 million international visitors. It is so modest compared to the region’s potential.
General Director Ky said the linkage in tourism between the Mekong delta and Ho Chi Minh City is weak meanwhile there has been lack of diversity of tourism products.
Chairman of Ho Chi Minh City People’s Committee Nguyen Thanh Phong said at the conference that the city always considers the Mekong delta as its partners for tourism development; therefore, linkage plays a significant role.
Tourism industry is one of important pillars for socio-economic growth, culture of Ho Chi Minh City and the Mekong delta region, said Mr. Nguyen Thanh Phong.
For years, low awareness of the role of the Mekong delta to HCMC’s growth and vice versa has led to weak linkage between the two sides.
He agreed that a general brand name for HCMC and Mekong delta tourism is needed.
Deputy Minister of Culture, Sports and Tourism Le Quang Tung said that the city and the Mekong delta region should build a detailed general cooperation plan as well as annual plan. Besides, the quality of tourism product, environment protection, adaption to climate change and rising seawater should receive attention to.
At the conference, HCMC and the region also signed an agreement on tourism growth for the period 2020-2025.