Countries in the Greater Mekong Subregion are working together to promote the subregion as a single destination for international visitors and encourage communities to enhance the environmental, social, and economic benefits of tourism.

The Tourism Working Group (TWG) provides operational leadership and technical guidance to plan, implement, monitor, and evaluate subregional activities.

In September 2017, ministers from the six member countries of the Greater Mekong Subregion (GMS) endorsed the GMS Tourism Sector Strategy 2016-2025 to enable more competitive, balanced, and sustainable destination development. The Strategy sets out five strategic directions: (a) develop human resources, (b) improve tourism infrastructure, (c) enhance visitor experiences and services, (d) conduct creative marketing and promotion activities, and (e) facilitate regional travel.

Work of the GMS tourism working group has included marketing sustainable and pro-poor tourism in the subregion through the development of multi-country tour packages; training government officials and people working in the tourism industry; producing local products for sale to tourists; and preserving the ecological and cultural heritage of key tourist sites in the subregion.

The GMS Economic Cooperation Program Strategic Framework 2030 (GMS-2030) builds on the current Tourism Strategy directions. Since the subregion’s tourism industry has been severely impacted, the GMS-2030 will promote recovery efforts, such as intraregional tourism. Over the long term, GMS-2030 will support the development of higher value-added and secondary destinations, as well as strengthen human capital, connectivity infrastructure, public–private linkages, and environmental sustainability. GMS-2030 was endorsed and adopted at the 7th GMS Summit of Leaders in September 2021. It aims to provide a new setting for the development of this subregion for the next decade.


Greater Mekong Subregion Tourism Sector Strategy 2016-2025

Tourism Working Group (TWG)

Mekong Tourism Coordinating Office website


Focal Persons at the Asian Development Bank

  • Steven Schipani 
    Water and Urban Development Sector Office

    Sectors Group

  • Dee Suvimol Thanasarakij (Ms.)
    Executive Director, 
    Mekong Tourism Coordinating Office 

Other Concerned Staff & Consultants

  • Zulfia Karimova, EAPF 
    Regional Cooperation and Integration Unit
    Central and West Asia Department

  • Mark Bezuijen
    Agriculture, Food, Nature, and Rural Development Sector Office
    Sectors Group

  • Asadullah Sumbal 
    Regional Cooperation and Integration Unit
    Southeast Asia Department

  • Alma Canarejo 
    Regional Cooperation and Integration Unit
    Southeast Asia Department/GMS Secretariat 

Send inquiries to GMS Secretariat

The Kim Thanh International Border Gate between Lao Cai (Viet Nam) and Yunnan Province (PRC) plays a vital role in the GMS northern corridor. Photo by ADB.

AEIR 2023 Highlights Deepening Integration, Continued Economic Growth in the GMS

The Asian Economic Integration Report 2023 highlights the continued growth of integration in subregional initiatives and programs in Southeast Asia, including both in the GMS and the ASEAN, from 2006 to 2020.

Mekong Tourism Forum 2023

The annual Mekong Tourism Forum returns as an in-person event in Preah Sihanouk Province, Cambodia, on 25–27 April 2023. Hosted by the Ministry of Tourism, Kingdom of Cambodia, the Forum’s theme is “Rethinking for Resilience and Digitalization.” 

The Forum provides an interactive platform for regional tourism stakeholders to discuss critical issues and emerging trends, rethink the future of Greater Mekong Subregion (GMS) tourism, exchange insights and experiences, as well as reconnect face-to-face with each other.  

Mekong Tourism Forum 2022

The Mekong Tourism Forum 2022 (MTF 2022) was held in Quang Nam, Hoi An, Viet Nam, on 12 – 13 October 2022, attended by over 250 delegates from across the region. It was hosted by Viet Nam’s Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism, in collaboration with the Mekong Tourism Coordinating Office (MTCO) and supported by the Asian Development Bank. The MTF 2022 followed the 50th Meeting of the Greater Mekong Subregion (GMS) Tourism Working Group and the MTCO Board Meeting.  

Cambodia Welcomed Close to 1.6 Million Foreign Tourists before End of 2022

Cambodia has welcomed over 1.57 million international visitors during the first ten months of 2022, according to the latest report of the country’s Ministry of Tourism. The number of foreign tourists grew by 991.1% compared to the same period in 2021. According to data, tourist arrivals are as follows: around 1 million by land, around 560,000 by air, and 10,000 by waterway. 

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 Guangxi Li River Comprehensive Ecological Management and Demonstration Project will implement sustainable village preservation and low-carbon facilities. Photo by ADB.

ADB to Support Preservation of Guilin in PRC

 The Asian Development Bank (ADB) has approved a $140 million loan to improve the environmental and economic conditions in Guilin in the Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region of the People’s Republic of China.

“Rapid urbanization has become a threat to Guilin's natural resources and sustainable development,” said ADB Senior Transport Specialist for East Asia Nicolas Dei Castelli. “This project will include a number of innovative solutions with demonstration potential, including low-carbon mobility, inclusive sanitation, and institutional development.”