Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Panic in ASEAN tourism

Panic in ASEAN tourism

Content image - Phnom Penh Post
Minister Thong Khon hosts a special meeting with ASEAN Tourism Ministers on Wednesday, during which ministers discussed post-virus plans for the sector. ASEAN

Panic in ASEAN tourism

ASEAN Tourism Ministers on Wednesday recognised the urgent need to strengthen the coordination mechanism to overcome challenges facing the tourism sector after Covid-19 brought travel and tourism businesses to a standstill.

They said the pandemic has led to high rates of unemployment and adversely affected the lives of many communities in ASEAN.

The ministers convened at a special meeting via video conference with Cambodia hosting, led by Minister of Tourism Thong Khon.

The goal was to find solutions to mitigate the Covid-19 impact on the tourism sector and jointly enhance cooperation to impose a restoration policy and set future goals to boost tourism.

Its joint statement said: “We are encouraged by the efforts individually and collectively implemented through various ASEAN government bodies in taking a united stand to mitigate the impact of the outbreak.

“We agree to implement clear policies and measures to bolster confidence among domestic and international visitors to Southeast Asia, including the development of clear standards and guidelines for a safer and healthier work environment to protect our workers and communities in the hospitality and tourism-related industries, destinations and establishments in ASEAN member states.”

The tourism ministers also agreed to continue to cooperate with ASEAN dialogue partners, international organisations and industry stakeholders to build a resilient and prepared Southeast Asia to effectively implement and manage tourism with sustainability and inclusiveness in the wake of the crisis.

“We agree to support the development and implementation of a post Covid-19 crisis recovery plan without undermining efforts to safeguard public health, which includes, but is not limited to, building up ASEAN tourism capabilities and engaging with industry stakeholders to boost business and consumer confidence.

“We agree to explore creative and innovative solutions to stimulate the tourism sector, especially through the use of digital technologies, ensuring top-of-mind marketing efforts and joint tourism promotion programmes to advance ASEAN as a single tourism destination,” the statement continued.

The ASEAN tourism ministers shared experiences on best practices for the prevention of Covid-19 and its impact in each member country, as well as strategic plans and actions to rescue tourism during the early recovery stage as well as the post-crisis recovery plan, the ministry of tourism posted on Facebook.

In Cambodia, 2,865 tourism businesses have been suspended or closed, affecting 46,369 employees, while 96 tour guides have suspended their licenses, Fresh News quoted Khon as saying in a press conference on Wednesday.

In the second week of March, more than 190,000 Cambodian and internal foreign tourists continued to tour the resorts and tourist sites in Cambodia, Khon told Fresh News last month.

Every day, especially on weekends, they continue to travel to tourism sites with family, in small groups, and individually, he said.

In particular, young people continue to visit eco-tourism and adventure tourism sites, coastal-island areas and other destinations in their provinces as normal.

MOST VIEWED

  • Judge lands in court after crashing into alleged thief

    Sen Sok district police on Thursday sent a Koh Kong Provincial Court judge to the Phnom Penh Municipal Court on manslaughter charges after he crashed his car into a woman riding a motorbike on Wednesday, killing her. District police chief Hour Meng Vang told The

  • Gov’t to boost Siem Reap tourism

    The Ministry of Tourism released the results of an inter-ministerial committee meeting concerning Siem Reap province’s Tourism Development Master Plan for 2020-2035 on Wednesday, revealing the government’s plan to improve the overall tourist landscape there. The meeting was attended by Minister of Tourism

  • Government set to make up for cancelled April holiday

    The government is set to make up for a five-day Khmer New Year holiday late this month or early next month. The holiday was earlier cancelled due to the onset of Covid-19. The announcement is expected on Friday as the government is studying a range

  • Crumbling prices, rent ruffle condo segment

    The prolonged decline in international arrivals to Cambodia intensified by renewed Covid-19 fears has driven down condominium sales prices and rental rates in Phnom Penh, a research report said. CBRE Cambodia, the local affiliate of US commercial real estate services and investment firm CBRE Group

  • Over $3M in traffic fines collected in two months

    Traffic police officers collected over $3 million in fines throughout the Kingdom during the past two months when officers strictly enforced the law in accordance with a May sub-decree, officials said. As incentives, law enforcement officers received between 200,000 and two million riel ($50 to $500) each. The figures

  • More than 10,000 workers suspended

    More than 10,000 workers at 18 factories in Svay Rieng province have been suspended because of Covid-19, said provincial deputy governor Ros Pharith. Home to 11 special economic zones, Pharith said Svay Rieng has not been spared as the pandemic takes a toll on the global economy. “There

  • Nod given for school exams

    The Ministry of Education, Youth and Sport announced that State-run higher educational institutions can hold examinations to end the academic year, while private schools can organise grade 9 and grade 12 examinations at their premises for two days. However, private institutions have to take measures to prevent

  • Kingdom’s exports to US mushroom 25.94% in first five months to $2.4B

    Though Cambodia’s exports to other countries have been stalled amid the evolving Covid-19 environment, the Kingdom’s shipments to the US were worth 25.94 per cent more in the first five months of this year than they were in the year-ago period. Bilateral trade between

  • Oz lauds Kingdom’s passage of money laundering laws

    In a press release published by the Australian embassy in Phnom Penh on Monday, the country applauded Cambodia’s stance on transnational crimes as well as its promulgation of an anti-money laundering law and a law on combating proliferation financing. The praise came after King

  • Lotus face masks designed to cover globe

    A French designer in Cambodia has produced ecological face masks from lotus fibre to supply local and international markets with an eye on preserving ancestral techniques and supporting Cambodian women in rural communities. During a trip to Asia, Awen Delaval, an eco-friendly fashion designer, was