Cambodia would host about two million Chinese tourists in 2020, a Cambodian official predicted yesterday.
The forecast accompanied figures released by Chinese officials saying the number of Chinese tourists globally would reach 200 million by 2020.
Tourism Minister Thong Khon said at a news conference after the 16th ASEAN Tourism Ministers’ Meeting in Laos that Chinese tourist numbers had soared well beyond expectations.
“Before, they assumed Chinese outbound tourists would number around 100 million globally by 2020, but according to statistics from the ASEAN-China Center and the report of a Chinese tourism official, Chinese tourists will reach 200 million [worldwide] by then,” he said.
China, Japan and South Korea collectively had 114 million outbound tourists. Chinese tourist numbers reached 83 million.
ASEAN countries had attracted nine million Chinese tourists last year. Cambodia had received about 330,000 of them – a 40 per cent rise, Khon said.
“We are acting with the Department of Market Study to prepare marketing strategies,” he said, adding: “We have completed about 80 per cent of the project. We need... more workshops and the help of the ASEAN-China Center.”
Ho Vandy, co-chair of the government-private sector working group on tourism, said the forecast for the future was one thing, but most important was the participation of all operators in the tourism field.
Vandy said ministry officials rather needed to strengthen the quality of tourism services.
The government should also reduce the tax on investment in the sector, he added.
To contact the reporter on this story: Rann Reuy at [email protected]