VietNamNet Bridge - Admitting that overcharging is now a big problem of Vietnam tourism, Minister of Culture, Sports and Tourism Hoang Tuan Anh promised to take measures to curb this problem.
At the National Assembly’s question session on June 13, Minister Hoang Tuan Anh faced many emerging problems, particularly problems of the tourism sector with sharp questions of National Assembly deputies.
Deputy Nguyen Hoai Phuong of Tay Ninh province asked the Minister about overcharging activities and poor quality of tourism products and measures to deal with these matters.
Deputy Le Trong Sang of HCM City questioned the Minister about the decline of visitors to Vietnam while Deputy Dao Xuan Yen of Thanh Hoa asked about measures to curb overcharging and harassment of peddlers against tourists.
Minister Hoang Tuan Anh admitted that overcharging acts have made apparently negative impacts on the image of the people of Vietnam in the eyes of international tourists. He said the Ministry would learn lessons from Da Nang, Nha Trang, Khanh Hoa and Binh Thuan in tourism management and to ask the Government to increase fines on violations in this field.
Minister Hoang Tuan Anh said that cameras would be installed at “black spots" of tourism together with hot lines for tourists. "We always want to keep the good image of Vietnam in the eyes of visitors and we will drastically control overcharging activities," he said.
Deputy Nguyen Hoai Phuong of Tay Ninh suggested the establishment of tourist police. Minister Hoang Tuan Anh said that many countries like Cambodia, Thailand, Malaysia, Egypt, India, the Philippines and others have the tourist police force. "Yesterday I met with the Minister of Public Security Tran Dai Quang to consult his opinion about this. He said this idea must be considered and reported to the Prime Minister.
When such a force is not set up yet, order police will join us to protect tourists," said Hoang Tuan Anh.
Deputy Nguyen Thanh Hai of Hoa Binh province said that Vietnam has nine world heritage sites recognized by the UNESCO but it ranks 80th in the world for tourism, while Thailand and Indonesia have less heritage sites but they rank 30th-40th.
National Assembly Chairman Nguyen Sinh Hung asked by 2020, will Vietnam tourism walk abreast with Thailand and Indonesia?
On this issue, Minister Hoang Tuan Anh said Malaysia and Singapore have higher numbers of luxury hotels than Vietnam. They are better than Vietnam in tourism advertisement. They also have hundreds of destinations and fleets while Vietnam has only 30 destinations.
He said Vietnam will have to exert a lot of efforts to improve the quality of tourism services and destinations, tourism infrastructure, relic conservation and promote advertisement. He straightforwardly admitted that by 2020, Vietnam tourism will be still unable to catch up with Thailand.
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