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Vietnamese tourism strives to contribute 10 pct to national GDP

By:Xinhua   Update:2016-08-09
HANOI, Aug. 9 -- Vietnamese Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc on Tuesday urged relevant agencies to seek for measures to bring tourism a key sector in the country's economy, contributing some ten percent to the national Gross Domestic Product (GDP).

According to statistics by Vietnam's Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism, in 2015, tourism contributed some 6.6 percent to the national GDP, creating 2.25 million jobs.

Last year, Vietnam welcomed nearly eight million foreign visitors, an increase of 0.9 percent year-on-year. However, participants at a national conference on tourism held Tuesday in Vietnam's central Quang Nam province said the growth of Vietnamese tourism sector does not commensurate with the country's potentials and advantages.

At the conference, the Vietnamese cabinet chief requested agencies to solve specific problems in Vietnamese tourism including price cheating, sanitation, food safety, security for tourists, and unprofessional attitude of tourism staff.

The low rate of returned tourists is also among problems that Vietnamese tourism sector has to deal with, the website of Vietnamese government cited Phuc as saying.

According to a survey conducted by Vietnam National Administration of Tourism in October and November of 2014, targeting foreigners and Vietnamese settling abroad, the proportion of international visitors to Vietnam for the first time accounted for about 67 percent of visitors, for the second time was 18.1 percent, third time was 5.77 percent, and over three times was 9.11 percent.

A total of 13,980 questionnaires in six different languages were delivered at random to international tourists to Vietnam after finishing their trips, at seven international border gates including three airports, two land and two sea border gates. Questionnaires were also sent to 1,000 international tour operators and 63 Departments of Culture, Sports and Tourism across the nation.

Earlier in 2015, Vietnamese Deputy Prime Minister Vu Duc Dam has revealed six weaknesses of the country's tourism industry, or six things foreign tourists are "very scared of" while they are in Vietnam, including unsafe traffic, dirty food and environment, thieves, beggars, and overcharging by vendors.

Vietnam has won global praise for beautiful scenes and nice people, but due to the problems, Vietnam has been losing tourists to nearby countries like Thailand, Malaysia and Singapore, which received several times more tourists every year, Dam told local media.

Vietnam earned nearly 338 trillion Vietnamese dong (over 15 billion U.S. dollars) from tourism in 2015. The country set a target to welcome at least 8.5 million foreign visitors in 2016 with 370 trillion Vietnamese dong (nearly 16.6 billion U.S. dollars) of tourism revenue.

Dian ICP Bei NO. 11000472-9