50th Meeting of the Greater Mekong Subregion Tourism Working Group (TWG-50)
The Government of Viet Nam, with the Viet Nam National Administration of Tourism (VNAT), Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism (MCST) and the Mekong Tourism Coordinating Office (MTCO) as co-organizer, hosted the 50th Meeting of the Greater Mekong Subregion (GMS) Tourism Working Group (TWG-50) on 11 October 2022 in Quang Nam, Viet Nam. The meeting was attended by senior and mid-level officials representing the National Tourism Organizations of the six GMS countries, MTCO, development partners and organizations including ASEAN Japan Centre (AJC), Pacific Asia Travel Association (PATA), and Asian Development Bank.
The TWG-50 meeting shared updates from GMS countries, which included (i) country reopening updates; (ii) government support programs for tourism businesses and public-private marketing efforts; (iii) experiences, good practices, issues and challenges in tourism reopening; and (iv) proposed initiatives that GMS member countries can do together to accelerate tourism recovery. PATA presented the current state of the travel industry in the Asia Pacific region, particularly GMS, and the latest forecasts of visitor arrivals over the next five years. Ms. Dee Suvimol Thanasarakĳ, MTCO Executive Director, reported on the implementation of GMS Tourism Recovery Communication Plan 2022-2025. Mr. Steven Schipani, Principal Tourism Industry Specialist, Southeast Asia Department, ADB, updated the meeting on recent approvals of ADB’s GMS Tourism Support Program; the 15 tourism proposals for inclusion in the GMS Regional Investment Framework (RIF) 2023-2025; and Sustainable Tourism Hub Knowledge Initiatives. The AJC shared activities for Sustainable and Responsible Tourism.