Jan 15, 2013

Vietnam - Tourism to find its place in the sun

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Vietnam National Administration of Tourism deputy chief Nguyen Manh Cuong sheds some light on major tourism events in 2013 and voiced the need to boost brand promotion investment to articulate Vietnam’s tourism potential.

How has the tourism industry gone with brand promotion after its new slogan and logo were unveiled in May, 2012?
Vietnam tourism has taken the new slogan ‘Vietnam – Timeless Charm’ and a new logo with stylised five-petal lotus from May 2012. As planned, after this new brand was aired, we needed to outline a brand promotion strategy for each developmental period. However, such activities remained modest in 2012, just taking place at several tourism fairs, due to a limited budget. A well-conceived investment plan is essential for promotion success.

Is the budget plan for 2013 more upbeat?
The capital for tourism promotion in 2013 has yet to be arranged. This illustrates the fact that undue attention was paid to promoting the country’s tourism. This must be rectified promptly.

Can the tourism industry attract 7.2 million international visitors as targeted this year with such a limited budget?
To welcome 7.2 million international visitors this year, a surge of 5.15 per cent against 2012, the tourism sector has laid down several major tasks. Accordingly, the plan to appeal to visitors coming from eight key outbound markets China, Japan, the Republic of Korea, Malaysia, Thailand, Australia, France and Russia will start in 2013. This reflects a strategic shift in attracting visitors from width to depth.

Meanwhile, National Tourism Year 2013, dubbed as the Red River Civilisation, is going in a right direction under the target each locality offering one specific tourism offering.

Significantly, the Vietnam International Tourism Fair 2013 entitled ‘Discovering the Red River delta-the Vietnamese culture origin’, the first of its kind to be held in Hanoi in April 2013, will provide an excellent opportunity to further promote Vietnamese tourism to international travel agencies and visitors.

The tourism sector, however, hopes relevant government agencies will ramp up support, gearing towards achieving the set goal of greeting 7.2 million international visitors this year.

What will be Vietnam’s distinctive tourism offerings?
Scores of Vietnamese cultural heritages were internationally recognised in 2012, like ‘the Hung Kings worship religion in Phu Tho’ as a cultural legacy, Vinh Nghiem pagoda’s Buddhist woodblocks as a world documentary heritage in the Asia-Pacific region or Halong Bay as one of the seven world wonders.

Thereby, heritage-oriented tourism offerings will be distinctive products expected to generate high values in the coming period.

Vietnam’s tourism brand has won praise from global prestigious bodies. For instance, UK’s leading travel web IWantSun put Vietnam among global top 10 most attractive destinations in 2013, meanwhile US Tourism Association (USTOA) placed Vietnam among emerging destinations of top choices by international visitors in 2013.

This reflects Vietnam’s tourism industry has immense potential to take off pursuant to well-planned brand promotion investment strategy.

Hai Ha | vir.com.vn

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